Motivational speaker Anne Marie Hagan brought a large crowd of police officers and mental health experts to their feet Thursday morning with an emotional speech about forgiveness and dealing with people suffering from mental health issues.
The 50-year-old nurse from Newfoundland travels across the country and talks about a tramatic event in her life and how her family was affected by someone with mental illness. Her personal reflections about coming to terms with the anger and grief touched the large crowd on hand for the day-long Ontario Association of Chiefs of Police's forum on Mental Health & Frontline Response.
Also attending were representatives from Ontario Shores, Durham Mental Health Services, the Ministry of Health and Long Term Care, the Ministry of the Attorney General and the University of Ontario Institute of Technology and other organizations.
The forum enables frontline community mental health service providers to share information, chat about emerging issues and explore new partnerships to improve service. Several police services, including the Durham Regional Police, have created specialized response units combining a specially-trained police officer with a mental health nurse to deal with mental-health related crisis calls.
More and more partnerships are forming across Ontario between police services and mental health support agencies to improve information sharing and response models.
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Anne Marie Hagan Speaks (JPG file, 172.6K bytes)
Expert Panel Discussions (JPG file, 128.2K bytes)
Large Crowd at Tosca Hall in Oshawa (JPG file, 162.5K bytes)