SOUTH BEND — Calls for a mobile crisis response team designed to respond to mental health crises have grown among residents in the two weeks since the fatal shooting of Dante Kittrell by South Bend police late last month.  

However, while activists and some city officials are pushing for a more effective response to incidents similar to Kittrell’s, conversations among community groups have yielded little consensus on the best way to implement crisis units. 

Last week, a resolution calling for the fire department to house a mental health team was rejected by the rest of the council. At a Wednesday night community meeting hosted by Faith in Indiana and Black Lives Matter South Bend, among others, the resolution’s sponsors — Lori Hamann and Henry Davis Jr. — said they aren’t giving up on the proposal and plan to revise the document for another vote.  

At the same meeting, representatives from Oaklawn Psychiatric Center gave a presentation on the health clinic’s Mobile Crisis Team that’s been responding to calls in the community since March. Residents had questions about Oaklawn’s team, including how it interacts with law enforcement and whether it would respond to calls involving weapons.  

Talks also appear to be growing more contentious with Faith in Indiana gathering in downtown South Bend on Friday to criticize Mayor James Mueller for not meeting with community leaders. Black Lives Matter also organized a demonstration outside Mueller's house on Monday morning, where seven people gathered to demand the city fund a mental health response team.

Copyright © 2022, South Bend Tribune