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Psychological crises are not a crime. Why are so many police attendances mental health related?


Erin Stewart of MHCC ACT


Op ed

This article was originally published in The Canberra Times on 27 January 2024.

Psychological crises are not a crime. Yet, 40 per cent of police attendances in the ACT are mental health related, very few of which relate to actual offending.

Advocates have long questioned the role of police in responding to mental health distress. Police are questioning their role, too. As ACT’s Chief Police Officer Deputy Commissioner Neil Gaughan contends, mental health crises are out of police scope.

Read the rest via The Canberra Times

Media contact: Erin Stewart, Advocacy, Policy, and Media Manager, 0493 388 756 |

MHCC ACT is the peak body for community-managed mental health services in the ACT. Find out more about MHCC ACT at

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