Award for British Transport Police officer behind mental health crisis car success
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A British Transport Police officer who set up a bespoke mental health facility has received a prestigious commendation in recognition of his work.
Sgt Paul Hevey, based at Liverpool, set up BTP’s first crisis triage vehicle pilot on Merseyside in April 2019.
After conducting extensive research, he had identified that the care officers provided to people in mental health crisis could be improved by teaming up with other agencies and rail partners.
Sgt Hevey acquired funding from Merseyrail and Network Rail for a mental health practitioner and triage vehicle – and the pilot was launched.
The vehicle operates as a two-person response car with a BTP officer and a Merseycare mental health practitioner working together to provide the best and most appropriate care when they come into contact with a vulnerable person around the railway.
Divisional Commander Chief Supt Glen Alderson said: “The results show the pilot has been of real benefit to countless people suffering a mental health crisis, who, thanks to Sgt Hevey’s efforts have received the best possible care at the first point of contact rather than being passed to various organisations.
“Protecting vulnerable people and helping those in need is incredibly important to us and Sgt Hevey’s determination and tenacity in setting up this pilot deserve to be commended.”