TWIN FALLS, Idaho (KLIX) – Local law enforcement agencies have been teaming this week as part of a Crisis Intervention Team, a 40-hour training opportunity for those who work in the profession.

Seven agencies from across the Magic Valley are involved in the training that started on Monday, said Twin Falls Police Sgt. Dusty Solomon. Twenty-six participants are upping their knowledge and skills to better recognize signs of psychiatric distress, how to respond safely and quickly to them, and how to de-escalate a potential crisis.

It’s been slow getting off the ground, but it’s now starting to roll,” says Sgt. Dusty Solomon with the Twin Falls Police Department. “We’re hoping to really get going on this.

The police department receives a number of calls that involve psychiatric distress, Solomon said. It is not always known at the time of the call if an incident involves such distress, but with proper training officers can better recognize those situations and respond accordingly. That may at times require calling the assistance of mental health professionals.

This week's training includes 20 different presenters from the law enforcement and mental health professions, some who work locally and some from other places in the region such as Boise and Washington.

CIT training started in 1987 in Tennessee, Solomon said, but Twin Falls adopted it in 2010.

“It’s been slow getting off the ground, but it’s now starting to roll,” she said. “We’re hoping to really get going on this.”

The ultimate goal is to partner with the community, she continued, noting that in the future the police department would like to have a similar outreach for community members, such as families of mental health patients, about how they could better partner with law enforcement and health professionals in the event of a crisis.