(Seattle). Seattle City Council’s Public Safety and Human Services Committee discussed progress on efforts toward alternative 911 responses on Tuesday. City staff and a representative from Seattle Mayor Bruce Harrell’s office discussed a Terms Sheet that lays out how they hope to work together moving forward through the process and laid out a rough timeline for what comes next.
“Even though we’re not everywhere we may want to be at this point in the year, there is a lot of behind-the-scenes work that has been happening,” Councilmember Lisa Herbold said. The effort aims to “diversify 911 responses so the appropriate expert shows up when someone calls for help,” according to a Seattle City Council spokesperson.
The proposal aims to develop a strategy that provides the best possible response to behavioral health crisis calls. It also aims to reduce harm and “provide an equitable system of emergency response that serves the city’s Black, Indigenous and people of color and most vulnerable underserved populations.” It is designed to keep first responders available for emergent needs and increase the rate of response for Priority 3 and 4 calls.
The city hopes to develop a short-term program to pilot and learn from during 2023 and work on a longer-term program moving forward. More on this story here.