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The city of Cambridge, Massachusetts, is preparing to replace police officers with unarmed social workers for some 911 calls. The city’s new Community Assistance Response and Engagement (CARE) team is expected to be operational as soon as July.

The CARE Team, which began training last September and conducting outreach since December, will be dispatched to non-violent incidents and mental health crises. Disturbingly, unlike similar programs in other cities, the CARE Team will not be accompanied by police officers, according to Boston 25 News.

While Liz Speakman, the team’s director, assures that they can “radio for assistance immediately and get back up right away” if safety concerns arise, this raises serious questions about the potential risks involved in this approach. Will social workers without any law enforcement training be equipped to handle unpredictable situations that could escalate rapidly?

Speakman claims that their team has learned from studying alternative response programs in Durham, NC. However, it remains unclear how effective these lessons will be in practice. Furthermore, the five members of the CARE Team, while experienced social workers and first responders, lack law enforcement backgrounds.

Chris Sullivan, President of the Cambridge Police Patrol Officers Association, issued the following statement to Boston 25 News:

The Cambridge Police Patrol Officers Association believes the Community Assistance Response and Engagement team has a place in Cambridge as a supplement to the city’s already excellent emergency services. However, the CARE team must first be prepared with proper training and safety protocols, and our negotiations with the City should be settled in good faith.

Every year, Cambridge Police Department officers deliver on-the-scene crisis intervention and emergency counseling to more than 1,000 people in mental health crisis; administer well over 50 life-saving doses of NARCAN to persons in drug-induced cardiac arrest; provide compassionate assistance and first-responder care to hundreds of citizens experiencing medical emergencies; and perform many other duties that demonstrate the care, compassion and dedication with which CPPOA members approach their job every day.

The Gateway Pundit previously reported that ver a dozen law enforcement departments in Colorado were planning to dispatch drones instead of officers to respond to specific 911 calls.

The Denver Police Department and several other law enforcement agencies in Colorado plan to dispatch drones instead of officers in situations where drones can provide information about the incident before officers are called to the scene.

The Denver Post reported that in some cases, the drone would be the only response to some incidents if an operator can determine from the air that officers don’t need to respond.

Sgt. Jeremiah Gates, who is in charge of the Arapahoe County Sheriff’s office, stated, “This really is the future of law enforcement at some point, whether we like it or not.”

Colorado Police Plan to Dispatch Drones Instead of Officers for Certain 911 Calls

The post Unarmed Social Workers to Replace Police in Responding to 911 Calls in Cambridge, Massachusetts appeared first on The Gateway Pundit.

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