1. Does a PERT unit consist of law enforcement officers only?

PERT is a team made up of 1 law enforcement officer (PERT Officer) and 1 licensed mental health clinician (PERT Clinician). The PERT Officer and partnered PERT Clinician ride together in a patrol vehicle. All PERT Clinicians wear black pants and a light gray polo shirt with the PERT emblem.


2. Does PERT employ officers?

PERT does not employ law enforcement officers. PERT is a mental health program employing clinicians (PERT Clinicians).


3. Do Law Enforcement agencies hire PERT Clinicians?

Law enforcement agencies do not employ PERT Clinicians. PERT's partnership agreement with 11 San Diego County law enforcement agencies allows collaboration between mental health services and law enforcement. 


4. If I call 911 and ask for PERT, will PERT always respond?

PERT response depends upon availability due to scheduling and volume of calls pending. Dispatchers will make every effort to dispatch PERT when mental health crisis issues are involved.


5. When requesting PERT services, does PERT always contact the person in crisis?

PERT response to a 911 call and the subsequent contact with the person in crisis will be determined by the responding law enforcement agency with considerations for risk to the individual, law enforcement and the public.


6. Are law enforcement officers who wear a PERT pin clinically trained?

Law enforcement officers wearing a PERT pin have attended the 3 -day PERT Academy training. Any PERT training for first responders is not clinical training; rather, it is crisis response and de-escalation skills training. Law enforcement officers wearing a PERT pin are not clinicians.


7. Do PERT Clinicians de-escalate persons in crisis by first contacting them prior to the officer's contact?

All crisis calls involving PERT Clinicians are first rendered safe by law enforcement officers.


8. Is verbal de-escalation effective on everyone, every time and in every situation?

Methods of verbal de-escalation can be effective if the person in crisis is able to participate in the process. De-escalation is a process involving many factors beyond merely a verbal approach, such as pre-contact planning and consultation to enhance outcome effectiveness.


9. Is PERT allowed to share protected health information with family members?

PERT abides by all Federal and State regulations regarding confidentiality and protected health information.