Commission on POST

Crisis Intervention Behavioral Health Training

Senate Bill 11 and 29
Impact on Law Enforcement

On October 3, 2015, Governor Brown, signed into law Senate Bill 11 and Senate Bill 29.   In brief, the resulting laws mandate mental health training for Field Training Officers (FTO), an increase in hours in Learning Domain 37 of the Regular Basic Course, and POST to create, maintain, and make available a three hour mental health course. This information is intended to facilitate an understanding of the new laws and how they will be implemented. Please refer to the California Penal Code (PC) for a full description of each law.

Field Training Officers shall have 8 hours of crisis intervention behavioral health training 

PC 13515.28(a) (1) 

Field Training Officers (FTO) will complete 8 hours of crisis intervention behavioral health training (CIT) as follows;

  • FTOs assigned or appointed on or before January 1, 2017 shall complete the training by June 30, 2017
  • FTOs assigned or appointed after January 1, 2017 shall complete the training within 180 days of assignment or appointment

FTOs are exempted if they have attended; 

  • a 40 hour CIT course or 
  • an 8 hour or more CIT course since October 3, 2013, that meets the criteria enumerated in PC13515.28(a)(1)  

To assist agencies with PC 13515.28(a)(1), POST is offering the following resources and services;

  • An expanded course outline (ECO) (pdf) and hourly distribution (pdf) for a Mental Health Course that satisfies the 8 hour training requirement for FTOs. Agencies or training centers may utilize the ECO to deliver a course by certifying it through their Regional Consultant.
  • Mental health training course providers may request their course outline be reviewed by POST to ensure it meets the required criteria of PC 13515.28(a)(1). Please initiate this review through the appropriate POST Regional Consultant.  If the course does not meet the criteria of SB 29, providers will be advised what to include in the course to satisfy the requirements.

Field Training Officers shall have 4 hours of crisis intervention behavioral health training as part of the Field Training Officer Course

PC 13515.29(a) ​

FTOs are required to have 4 hours of training (in addition to the mandated 8 hours of training required by PC 13515(a)(1) as a part of the Field Training Officer Course. POST is working with subject matter experts to incorporate the 4 hours of CIT training into the FTO course on or before October 3, 2016.  The FTO course will remain at 40 hours.

POST shall conduct an evaluation of the required competencies of the FTO program and Police Training Program

PC 13515.295(a) 

By May 2016, POST will conduct an evaluation of the required competencies of the FTO program and Police Training Program. The goal of the evaluation is to identify areas where additional training is necessary to help law enforcement officers effectively address incidents involving persons with a mental illness or intellectual disability. This law requires an update to the current Field Training Manuals. POST will not require agencies to re-submit their entire field training manual for this update to mental health field training. POST will provide agencies with the necessary mental health competency changes, and an attestation form to verify that the changes have been incorporated into their field training program.

The Regular Basic Course - Learning Domain 37 Mental Health shall be at least 15 hours

PC 13515.26(a) ​

In 2015, POST completed the review and update of LD 37 in consultation with appropriate community, local, and state organizations, and agencies that have expertise in the area of mental illness, intellectual disability, and substance use disorders, and with appropriate consumer and family advocate groups. The Regular Basic Course is in review to accommodate the increased hours.  

POST shall develop and make available three hours of training to law enforcement personnel as it relates to behavioral health

PC 13515.27(a) 

Police Response to People with Mental Illness, Intellectual Disabilities, and Substance Use Disorders course is available for download (docx). Agencies or training centers may utilize the ECO to deliver a course by certifying it through their POST Regional Consultant. Law enforcement personnel attending this course will meet their Communications perishable skills requirement for Continuing Professional Training. The course is not mandatory.