Description of original award (Fiscal Year 2023, $485,000)
Project LIGHT is a recent initiative that the City of Las Cruces has begun through L.C.F.D. The need for the mental health crisis response is a national and local issue. Within the City of Las Cruces, there were over 1,000 responses from the Las Cruces Police Department to mental health issues in 2022. Additionally, the Las Cruces Fire Department responded to over 850 calls for welfare checks and suicide during the same timeframe. A new resource is needed to respond to the need of our communities. The community's need led to the concept of renewing mental crisis response through a new approach that builds on the high performance of responders within the 911 system. The program took shape and grew from the Mobile Integrated Health program, L.C.P.D. Crisis Intervention Team, and the Opioid Overdose Outreach (Triple O) program that was funded from a sub-recipient grant from the State of New Mexico as a portion of a SAMHSA Triple O award. Today, the City of Las Cruces is proud to have a response team that is comprised of a Licensed Master Social Worker and Firefighter Paramedic to respond to mental crisis calls.