Ontario Investing in Mobile Crisis Response Teams

Funding will help police in Simcoe County support people experiencing a mental health crisis

INNISFIL — The Ontario government is providing $117,864.58 to help South Simcoe Police Service provide specialized support to people who are experiencing a mental health crisis. The funding is being delivered through the Mobile Crisis Response Team Enhancement Grant program and enables police to utilize trained crisis workers when responding to those in need.
Through diligent allocation of funds and the collaboration with Your Support Services Network (YSSN) and Canadian Mental Health and Association (CMHA) Barrie, South Simcoe Police were able to extend the grant further by additional 400 hours, for a total of 2,220 hours. Initially, the grant was aimed at 1,820 hours of mental health or addiction crisis support.
“The Mobile Crisis Response Teams (MCRT) Grant is a critical investment and represents an important benefit for Innisfil and Simcoe County residents,” said MPP Andrea Khanjin. “The funding will build on the great work South Simcoe Police does to help the community at large when it comes to complex situations, mental health, and addiction calls. The MCRT Grant is certainly a high-priority element for our community’s safety and well-being, and I know South Simcoe Police and our community will benefit greatly from this provincial grant.”
“We are incredibly grateful for this funding to the South Simcoe Police Service to assist them in providing support to those experiencing a mental health crisis,” said Mayor Lynn Dollin. “This funding will allow our police service to more effectively manage these types of situations and facilitate the appropriate resources for those in need.”
In 2023-24, the Ontario government is allocating more than $4.5 million to 39 municipal and First Nations police services, as well as Ontario Provincial Police (OPP), to help strengthen Mobile Crisis Response Teams across the province.
“We’re supporting our police services by providing them with the resources they need to assist vulnerable people in crisis situations,” said Solicitor General Michael Kerzner. “Mobile Crisis Response Teams are best positioned to respond to people experiencing a mental health or addictions crisis and are an important part of how police in collaboration with this government are working hard to keep Ontarians safe.”
“This grant will help us meet the growing need to assist people in crisis in our communities,” said South Simcoe Police Chief John Van Dyke. “The additional funding allows our mental health partner agencies to expand hours of coverage for the Crisis Outreach and Support Team (COAST) program. The program consists of a specially trained, plainclothes police officer and a mental health crisis worker who respond to crisis calls. Working together to de-escalate situations and provide mental health support, this program is essential to help persons in crisis navigate support systems in our communities. We are grateful to be included in the recipients of this funding, which will enhance the crucial role of COAST. This demonstrates our commitment to maximizing the impact of the grant and ensuring that our communities receive the support they need.”


• Mobile Crisis Response Teams consist of police officers and crisis workers working together to respond to complex situations where mental health or addictions may be a factor. Supported by the police, crisis workers can assess if an individual should be sent to an emergency department for treatment and/or provide referrals to community programs that support mental and physical well-being.
• The Mobile Crisis Response Teams Enhancement Grant is part of Ontario’s Roadmap to Wellness to build Ontario’s mental health and addictions system and complements the government’s earlier commitments to protect people’s health and enhance mobile crisis teams across the province.