I propose recreating the Kansas City Police Force to include varying roles: Law Enforcement Officers alongside Mental Health professionals, Mediators and professionals with similar skillsets--with each role holding equal value for how they contribute to the health of the community whom they've all committed to serve & protect. The community needs ready access to all of these roles, the lack of which is sorely felt. We should then invest in cross-training across departments in order to promote inter-departmental teamwork & respect in this new force. Most importantly, add regular training in (and policy upholding) de-escalation techniques for all members of this police force. Someone once told me that multiple officers who were trained in de-escalation techniques later confessed that that training ended up saving lives.
As big of a task as it may sound--and as challenging (and challenged) as it may be--recreating a police force has been done before, and the aftermath warrants attention from those who deeply care about the well-being of our community:
This proposal goes one step further in that our police force, itself, would be formed upon our placing equal value on all of the roles needed to profitably meet urgent situations in our communities.