Program offers alternative to calling police

For 31 years, CAHOOTS (Crisis Assistance Helping Out On The Streets) has used unarmed medics and crisis intervention experts to respond to mental health and other non-violent crises, saving money and preventing potentially violent reactions that can result from having police respond first. No effects on police officers' use of force have been measured. But CAHOOTS estimates it saves taxpayers $8.5 million annually in police costs.

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