ProQuestDocuments-2018-10-24 (4).pdf

Participants completed a four part interview with the

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Participants completed a four-part interview with the researcher that first asked them to recall and answer questions about the most recent incident involving a person with mental illness while working. They were then asked to first enumerate the number of calls involving persons with mental illnesses that they had responded to in the past month and then provide details about these encounters. The next section included questions concerning the officer's perceptions about the effectiveness of the district's psychiatric services, the district's ability to handle mental health calls and the usefulness of their policing skills in handling mental health calls. Officers were also asked to give their perceptions of the CIT program. Finally, demographic questions such as the officer's race and length of time in the district were included (see Table II [Figure omitted. See Article Image.]). Dependent variable The dependent variable is a composite measure "CIT is an undesirable program." Since rank and file officers are believed to view new innovations as negative or detrimental to their roles ([24] Skogan, 2008), they may approach CIT with a negative orientation. As such, this variable is negatively framed. This measure is comprised of four questions asked of officers about the CIT program. Officers were asked to strongly disagree, disagree, agree or strongly agree with the following statements: - the CIT program prevents officers from performing more important activities; - the CIT program does not provide officers with enough guidance for responding to incidents; - the CIT program is just one more fad in policing that will soon be replaced with another fad; and - the CIT program takes good police officers and turns them into ineffective social workers. These questions were summed and divided by four to create an index on the original scale. The highest value possible is 4 where an officer has a negative view of CIT and the lowest is 1 where an officer has a positive view of CIT. Scores for our sample ranged from 1 to 3.5 with a mean of 1.78 (SD=0.54). Cronbach's for the scale was 0.869. Independent variables Officer CIT training To determine each individual officer's CIT training status, we obtained the list of CIT training completion dates from the CPD and coded the officer as CIT trained if their completion date occurred prior to the interview. Anyone who had not completed training was coded as a non-CIT trained officer (CIT=1, non-CIT=0). Mental health resource availability Mental health resource availability represents the relative availability of mental health resources in the district. This includes proximity to a hospital but also the presence of day programs and other social service providers frequently utilized by PWMI. Officers within District B and D were coded as residing in the "high resource district" condition, whereas officers within Districts A and C were coded as residing the "low resource district" condition.
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