The Merrifield Crisis Response Center (MCRC) provides 24-hour comprehensive walk-in psychiatric emergency services to individuals of all ages who are experiencing a mental health or substance use crisis. Fairfax County Sheriff’s Office Crisis Intervention Team (CIT) is comprised of specifically trained deputies that provide support to the extent possible to the Fairfax-Falls Church Community Services Board (CSB) and its staff, located at the MCRC, when responding to mental health crisis situations involving the Sheriff’s Office within the ADC, and in the community 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. The mission of the CIT deputies is to intervene before a crisis becomes acute, to offer mental health services to those without current providers, to reduce the use of force incidents and to utilize other internal or external supports to facilitate recovery for each person served. Trained staff transport mental health patients to state and local hospitals for evaluations, criminal or civil commitments, or as ordered by a judge or special justice for emergency treatment.
Diversion First offers alternatives to incarceration for people with mental illness, co-occurring substance use disorders and/or developmental disabilities, who come into contact with the criminal justice system for low-level offenses.
The goal is to intercede whenever possible to provide assessment, treatment or needed supports. People needing diversion may also have a substance use disorder, which often co-occurs with mental illness. Diversion First is designed to prevent repeat encounters with the criminal justice system, improve public safety, promote a healthier community and is a more cost-effective and efficient use of public funding.