Helen Ross McNabb Center announces CIT certified staff

(MORRISTOWN, Tenn.) The Helen Ross McNabb Center is proud to announce the certification of two tenured staff as Crisis Intervention Team (CIT) coordinators in Hamblen County. Sharon Reid, director of Hamblen County services, and Ray Morrison, New Hope Recovery Center services coordinator, participated in a specialized training and certification course by CIT International.  

CIT International aspires to be a leader in promoting safe and humane responses to those experiencing a mental health crisis. The program is a community partnership of law enforcement, mental health and addiction professionals, which provides the foundation necessary to promote community and statewide solutions to assist individuals with a mental illness and/or addictions. 

Nearly 25 officers from the Lakeway Area graduated from the first CIT training in November. The intensive training connects officers with mental health professionals who can provide support when a challenging situation occurs. In addition, officers learn verbal de-escalation skills and experience scenario-based training on responding to crisis. 

“We have already seen positive outcomes in the Lakeway community from last fall’s CIT training,” said Mona Blanton-Kitts, regional clinical vice president with the Helen Ross McNabb Center. “We are excited to now have two staff in Hamblen County who are certified to lead future CIT trainings for law enforcement with the hope of keeping people with mental illness out of jail and into treatment.”

The Helen Ross McNabb Center is a premier not-for-profit provider of behavioral health services in East Tennessee. Since 1948, the Center has provided quality and compassionate care to children, adults and families experiencing mental illness, addiction and social challenges. As the Center celebrates 70 years of providing services to communities in East Tennessee, its mission remains clear and simple; “Improving the lives of the people we serve.” For more information, visit
www.mcnabbcenter.org or call 1-800-255-9711.