Intergovernmental Mutual Aid Agreement

Intergovernmental Mutual Aid Agreement
Posted on 03/13/2023
On March 13, the Village Board approved an Intergovernmental Mutual Aid Agreement regarding the transportation of patients by Pleasant Prairie Police Enforcement from Wisconsin to the Lake Behavioral Hospital in Waukegan, Illinois, as part of the Kenosha County Police Assisted Addiction and Recovery Initiative. Last week, the Kenosha County Board unanimously approved the Agreement. On March 11, the Kenosha County Executive signed the agreement stating that Kenosha County has entered into a contractual relationship with Lake Behavioral Hospital, to provide mental health care and treatment to its residents pursuant to Chapter 51 of the Wisconsin Statutes. Participating municipal law enforcement departments must also approve the Agreement. 

The purpose of the Agreement is to help alleviate costs from labor-intensive transports of patients from Kenosha County to the current county primary placement destination, Winnebago Mental Health Institute in Oshkosh. Changing the placement destination to Lake Behavioral also allows hospitalizations to be closer to the patients’ families who reside in Kenosha County. Additionally, the change allows local law enforcement to spend more time in the community since transporting patients to Winnebago may take up to 16 hours of two law enforcement officers’ time, including the custody process, transportation to an emergency health department to identify care needs, and the five-to-six-hour round trip to Oshkosh.

“To have the opportunity for patients in need of inpatient psychiatric care in Lake County and be near their local communities not only helps their families but also keeps our officers closer to home,” said Pleasant Prairie Police Chief David Smetana.

The intent of this Agreement is to set terms and conditions between the Law Enforcement Agencies to support and assist each other and their respective roles regarding the transport of persons for involuntary mental health commitments from Kenosha County to Lake Behavioral. The Agreement also establishes the jurisdictional authority and operational guidelines for the Law Enforcement Agencies sufficient to permit the Wisconsin Law Enforcement Agencies to transport individuals from Wisconsin to Lake Behavioral Hospital in Illinois for mental health services. Each Law Enforcement Agency shall follow their own policies and protocols with regard to transportation, detention, and transition of  individuals to treatment. 
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