mental health awareness

Jim Levulis / WAMC

Law enforcement officers in western Massachusetts recently completed a week of crisis intervention training. The course focused on dealing with people with mental health and substance abuse issues.

Working with local theater actors, officers were put in role-playing scenarios, such as a suicide situation.

May is nationally recognized as Mental Health Awareness Month, and mental health advocates in the Berkshires are becoming involved to educate the public about the resources available for those living with mental illness.

As part of a way to draw attention to mental illness is his local community, North Adams mayor Richard Alcombright recently called together a discussion with mental health professionals and representatives of area mental health service providers.

"Really what we wanted do this week was to get out some awareness and get it going," said Alcombright.