Mental Health and Police Teams
Collaborative initiatives between local and provincial police and mental health crisis services have been developed to address the gap in the continuum of existing community crisis services.
These specialized teams, consisting of a mental health crisis worker partnered with a specially trained plain clothes police officer work in the community providing intervention to individuals who are in severe distress, or who are experiencing a mental health crisis and whose needs are not being effectively met through the justice system or the health sector. Windsor residents are supported by the Community Outreach and Support Team (C.O.A.S.T.) through a partnership between Windsor Police Services and Hôtel-Dieu Grace Healthcare. Essex County residents are supported by the Mental Health Response Unit (M.H.R.U.) through a partnership between the Ontario Provincial Police and Hôtel-Dieu Grace Healthcare.
Many of the individuals receiving this service come to the attention of police and Emergency Department personnel when conditions deteriorate to a point where hospitalization or incarceration are deemed to be the only options. In these situations calls to 911 services become the norm. And realistically, these options at best afford a “short term fix” and rarely provide the solution needed for long term change.
The objectives of the specialized Mental Health and Police Teams are to engage with individuals to prevent admission/incarceration whenever possible and to work to facilitate the most optimal outcome to the situation. The Mental Health and Police Teams also conduct Crisis In Training, a week-long training program for police officers who may encounter individuals experiencing a mental health crisis.
Referrals are accepted by anyone who is concerned about another person’s mental health or psychosocial situation and can be made by phone or email directly to Windsor C.O.A.S.T. or Essex County M.H.R.U.
The partnership with the Ontario Provincial Police - Essex Detachment and the Community Crisis Centre of Windsor-Essex County is known as the OPP MHRU (Mental Health Response Unit) and provides this service throughout Essex County.
Referrals to this county service may be made by calling the appropriate number from the list below or email email@example.com. Click here to view the referral form.
Hours are 8:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m. Monday - Thursday
Phone: (519) 723-4600 Fax: (519) 723-4556
Hours are 8:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m. Tuesday - Friday
Phone: (519) 324-0123 Fax: (519) 324-0762
The partnership with Windsor Police Service and the Community Crisis Centre of Windsor-Essex County is known as WPS C.O.A.S.T. (Community Outreach and Support Team) and provides services in the City of Windsor.
Referrals to this city service may be made by calling (519) 255-6700 ext. 4203 or email firstname.lastname@example.org. Click here to view the referral form.
Hours are 8:00 a.m. to 10:00 p.m. Monday - Friday
Families’ and Friends’ Role in Promoting Safety
Family members and friends play an important role in patient safety. Encouraging attendance of appointments, taking medications and asking to be involved in understanding and facilitating treatment plans is recommended among family members and friends. If family members and friends have serious concerns about a loved one’s safety and well-being please utilize emergency (911) or crisis hotline (519-973-4435) services or locations (nearest emergency room or crisis centre) as needed. You are always allowed to provide us with information however we may not be able to relay information/feedback to you directly. For any important messages the hospital contact information is provided on this website under the Contacts link. Thank you for your role in promoting safety.