Mental health nurse added for weekend SD&G O.P.P. calls

In this provided photo, Nurse Jody Maribel and SD&G O.P.P. Const. Eric Ranger stand outside the Long Sault O.P.P. detachment. Maribel is the second nurse added to a response team to deal with mental health calls. (SD&G O.P.P. via Newswatch Group)

LONG SAULT – Mental health calls for SD&G O.P.P. don’t just happen Monday to Friday.

The police force has announced that it’s added a second nurse to the Mobile Crisis Response Team (MCRT) to handle Saturday and Sunday calls.

Officers have been patrolling with Cornwall Community Hospital Registered Nurse Don Depratto since late September last year.

Nurse Jody Maribel has been working with the local detachment since Jan. 30.

The United Counties of SD&G approved its budget in principle last week which included another $40,000 in bridge funding for the MCRT until the end of the year.

SD&G O.P.P. say the program has already reduced the time officers have to sit in a hospital after a mental health call – from nearly three hours to 30 minutes – and reduced the number of arrests through early intervention.

The weekend coverage will continue until the fall.