Lynn Earmarks Half-Million Dollars For Unarmed Crisis Response Team

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LYNN, Mass. (WBZ NewsRadio) — Lynn is taking steps to establish a first-in-the-Commonwealth unarmed emergency response team to handle mental health emergencies.

Lynn's city council and mayor approved $500,000 of funding in the city's FY2022 budget for the team, which will be called the All Lynn Emergency Response Team (ALERT).

The money will go toward the first steps of setting up the response team, such as further research and hiring a consultant to get the team off the ground.

ALERT is the brainchild of the Lynn Racial Justice Coalition, a group of local organizations that began to call for an unarmed response team after the killings of George Floyd and Breonna Taylor last summer. The mayor and city council previously approved $25,000 in exploratory funding for examining the city's racial justice issues.

The Coalition said the team could take on as much as 13% of all Lynn Police emergency calls. The plan is to have a pilot program running by the beginning of 2022, according to the Boston Globe.

Similar teams have been piloted in cities like New York City and San Francisco.

WBZ's Madison Rogers (@madisonwbz) reports:

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