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Behind the Mask 2: Mental Health Crisis Response

On January 2, 2021, Vincent Bryant, a Black, unhoused man was shot in the face at point blank range by the Berkeley Police while experiencing a mental health crisis. Thankfully, he survived, but this police response is outrageous.

Berkeley Copwatch invites you, the Berkeley community, to analyze footage of this incident and try to understand what went wrong.

We will be joined by a panel of mental health workers and activists to explore the question: What would mental health care and crisis response look like without police involvement? We will examine how mental health emergency response currently happens and the rising opportunity for alternative crisis response in Berkeley. We will also look at other communities already doing this work. Break out groups will follow and community dialogue will be encouraged.

In Berkeley, we have an opportunity to create structural change: this summer the city council approved an initiative for a Specialized Care Unit that would respond to mental health crises without police involvement. Now is the time to pressure the City of Berkeley to follow through on their commitment:

  • The SCU must funded, so that it can actually be effective

  • The SCU must be dispatched without police

  • Since the police will not be responding to these incidents, funding must come directly from the police budget

  • There must be options for long-term care in addition to crisis intervention

Content Warning: This event will discuss and show video of police violence against Black people and people with mental health conditions.

Join the Zoom event:

Date: Wednesday, March 24 at 7pm

Meeting ID: 874 2284 2921

Passcode: copwatch

Dial in: +1 669 900 6833 US

Meeting ID: 874 2284 2921

Passcode: 54672099

*The event is free to attend, and everyone is welcome.

This is the second event in the Behind the Mask series. If you missed, Behind the Mask 1, here is the recording:


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