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Mental Health Awareness Month

May 27, 2021

May is Mental Health Awareness Month. The purpose, signified by a green ribbon, is to raise awareness, educate the public and fight the stigmas around mental health.

The Mental Health America organization is credited with first observing Mental Health Awareness Month in May. Their theme to promote mental health awareness in 2021 “Tools 2 Thrive.” The organization provides practical tools that everyone can use to improve their mental health and increase their resiliency regardless of their personal situation.

Crisis Intervention Training for our sheriff’s office personnel is a priority of the Florida Sheriffs Association. The intent of the training is to raise the officers’ awareness of mental illness, how to identify the signs, and how to respond properly when responding to a call that involves a mentally ill person while maintaining their own personal health.

The Florida Legislature also recognizes the value of this training. Since funding the FSA program since its inception in 2015, each session has continued the funding. In addition to deputy sheriffs, all state and local officers may attend as well. FSA Staff member Dr. Joyce Carbonell manages the CIT program. Dr. Carbonell retired from the Florida State University as a Professor in the College of Arts and Sciences Department of Psychology before joining the FSA. Classes have been delivered all over the state resulting in hundreds of graduates.