Call to Mental Health Services to Support QPS Referrals
Front-line police have millions of interactions with community members each year. Many of these are with people experiencing stress, distress and a range of social issues. The Queensland Police Service (QPS) has been connecting vulnerable and disadvantaged people with support services for over ten years. Conducting referrals is now an embedded strategy of effective front-line policing as it assists to address underlying social and personal issues.
Front-line police have an ability to significantly impact on the lives of the people they encounter. Police Referral Services presents a significant opportunity to direct those in need to the help they require. The long term impact of this process can be life-changing for the referred client, their family and the local community.
The QPS, as part of a cross-agency approach to support vulnerable individuals is able to make non-crisis referrals to service providers regarding many issues, with mental health being one of those.
Up until the recent NDIS changes, the Mental Health category has been effectively supported by many NGOs across Queensland, however, due to the NDIS transition, these services are now facing challenges in supporting this referral pathway. Without resources and capacity, providers are unable to continue to support these referrals which leaves Queensland Police with a greatly reduced number of appropriate services to connect vulnerable clients in the community with.
How can you help?
Police Referrals are exploring the best way forward in order to keep Mental Health as a referral category for referring officers and are interested in speaking with those services that are now commissioned to play a supporting role to clients in the various regions in order to make sure that there are no clients falling through the gaps during this NDIS transition phase.
Connecting clients to appropriate community services is the aim of the Police Referrals so please support this valuable service and those suffering mental health issues.
For further information please contact the Police Referral Coordination Service on 1300 058 910.