Attorney General Also Forms Statewide Steering Committee to Advise on Continued Expansion of ARRIVE Together Initiative
For Immediate Release: December 21, 2022
Office of the Attorney General
– Matthew J. Platkin, Attorney General
TRENTON – Attorney General Matthew J. Platkin today announced an expansion of the ARRIVE Together mental health crisis response initiative to additional municipalities in Cumberland and Union Counties, as well as the initiation of an innovative new version of the program in Atlantic County.
The ARRIVE Together program, first piloted by the State Police in Cumberland County in December 2021 in partnership with the Department of Human Services, pairs a trooper with a mental health screener from the Cumberland County Guidance Center in an unmarked vehicle to respond to 9-1-1 calls for service relating to mental or behavioral health crises. The program expanded to a pilot in Union County in June 2022 run by the Elizabeth and Linden Police Departments and Trinitas Medical Center. The pilots have served hundreds of individuals in distress who come into contact with law enforcement.
The new municipalities participating in the initiative are the Bridgeton Police Department in Cumberland County (joining in partnership with the State Police); Roselle Park Police Department in Union County (joining in partnership with Elizabeth and Linden), and Atlantic City Police Department in Atlantic County. In Atlantic City, the pilot will use telehealth tools to aid law enforcement officers in better responding to mental health-related calls for service. Officers will be equipped with electronic tablets that can be used by individuals in distress to obtain real-time virtual telehealth services from mental health professionals at AtlantiCare Regional Medical Center.
“We continue to expand on the success of the ARRIVE Together program,” said Attorney General Platkin. “The addition of new partners — both police departments and mental health providers — reflects the need for these services in our communities and the power of collaboration across the sectors of government.”
“The ARRIVE Together program has successfully grown and has proven to be an effective tool in assisting law enforcement officers to meet the needs of people who are experiencing a mental or behavioral health crisis,” said Colonel Patrick J. Callahan, Superintendent of the New Jersey State Police. “The State Police supports the continued expansion and we welcome the opportunity to partner with additional agencies as we ensure that more New Jersey residents will have access to the same resources.”
“This is all about saving and rebuilding lives by bringing together law enforcement and mental health professionals to handle crisis situations in a smart and effective way that puts the focus on helping the individual in need,” said Commissioner of the New Jersey Department of Human Services Sarah Adelman. “The continued expansion of this program is part of our ongoing work to improve mental health care in New Jersey with innovative and appropriate programs. We remain appreciative of this partnership with the Office of the Attorney General and the New Jersey State Police, and look forward to expanding this vital work to more communities across the state.”
The Attorney General is also forming a Statewide Steering Committee to advise on the ARRIVE Together initiative as it continues to grow. The Steering Committee will be comprised of law enforcement executives, mental health professionals, prosecutors, and community leaders. The group will provide insight and feedback from their various perspectives on the future direction of the program in order to best serve the residents of the State.
In addition to the expansions announced today, the State Police recently won a competitive grant from the federal government called “Connect and Protect: Law Enforcement Behavioral Health Response Program,” for approximately $550,000 that will fund ARRIVE Together programs. The State Police is awarding a portion of those monies as competitive subgrants to other law enforcement agencies seeking to establish their own ARRIVE Together program working with mental health providers. Eligible applicants for the competitive subgrant funding can apply for potential grant awards here: https://www.njoag.gov/resources/grant-opportunities/