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Date Responded 10 August 2018

Provision of information held by Northumbria Police made under the Freedom of Information Act 2000 (the 'Act')

As you may be aware the purpose of the Act is to allow a general right of access to information held at the time of a request, by a Public Authority (including the Police), subject to certain limitations and exemptions.

You asked:

1. Details of whether the force offers training to police officers specifically in handling cases in which mental health is a factor (yes/no is sufficient).

2. The number of nurses placed in control rooms to tackle mental health issues over the past five years.  13/2014, 14/2015, 15/2016, 16/2017 and 17/2018?  This article (and the report p.85) gives detail of nurses being used by some forces as additional staff to help in cases where mental health is a factor

3.  The number of cases since 2011 to 2018 (financial years 2011/12 etc) in which mental health qualifier tags were recorded by the force.  

In Response:

We have now had the opportunity to fully consider your request and I provide a response for your attention.

 Following receipt of your request, searches were conducted with the (Department/s Area Command/s) of Northumbria Police. I can confirm that the information you have requested is held by Northumbria Police.

 I am able to disclose the located information to you as follows. 

1.   Yes

2.  No information held.  Northumbria Police do not have a collaboration or recruitment of any trained nurses placed within our control rooms to support mental health calls. 

3.  2017/18 = 8132

 In relation to question 3.  For the previous years, these have been requested in the past and are freely available on the Northumbria Police Disclosure Log, therefore, the following exemption applies. 

Section 21 (1) - Information accessible by other means

Information which is reasonably accessible to the applicant is exempt information.

This information has been asked for previously, released and is published on the Northumbria Police Disclosure.  See FOI 887/17.  The link to this as below.

You should also note the caveat that has been provided with the previous FOI 887/17, in which there is an explanation about how the mental health qualifier code is applied.  I have copied this below for your information. 

" In the period requested there have been several methods of recording a mental health related incident.  However, there has always been a mental health qualifying code that can be applied to an incident.  This was QD4, later changed to QMH.  Therefore, the data relating to mental health in this FOI return is based on whether a relevant qualifying code has been attached. 

As there are only three fields to record a closing codes and qualifiers, those with the highest priority will be used i.e. vulnerable persons, hate crime.  As such, there will be more mental health incidents than shown in this FOI.

This data will include all types of mental health categories including learning difficulties, age related diseases, as well as alcohol and drug related issues. "

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