Since the creation of the Training and Education about Mental Illness for Police Organizations (TEMPO) Program in 2010, the MHCC has been reviewing its progress and its alignment with new evidence in the field of police education and training. This report is part of this effort and it outlines 16 key recommendations for police education and training to better prepare Canadian police personnel for interactions with people with mental illness. The report also includes:
- A summary of related MHCC reports from 2008 and 2010
- An updated literature review of outcomes research and data on the effectiveness of training and education in policing
- Notable police training and education programs from Canada and abroad
- The results of two 2013/2014 scans of Canadian police academy as well as in-service training and education about mental health issues
- Conclusions and next steps, including necessary revisions to the TEMPO framework.
The TEMPO model, which is outlined in this report, is not to be viewed as a standard curriculum for all police academies and services across Canada. Instead, it should be seen as an adaptable framework that recognizes the lived experiences of people with mental health issues, the full range of police services and stakeholders, and the unique contexts of their communities.
Similar to the CMHA Ontario 2011 discussion paper Violence and Mental Health: Unpacking a Complex Issue, the MHCC states that people with mental health issues are no more likely to be violent than those without mental health issues. As a result, the report recommends that procedural justice (due process, fairness and equity) as well as a client/customer focus approach is required when police officers interact with persons with mental illnesses. It is also recommended that these elements are reflected when police academies and services develop their training and education curricula.