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Community Safety Department Development Underway

The City is committed to ensuring the Cambridge community has access to non police responses to crisis situations and creating a sense of safety for all who live, work, play and pray here. The development of the new Community Safety Department is guided by an understanding that a compassionate response to a mental health crisis is optimal for healing and de-escalation. 

Cambridge City Manager Yi-An Huang has appointed Liz Speakman, LICSW as the Interim Director and hired Michele Scott as the Coordinator of the Community Safety Department (CSD). Liz is part of the Executive Office and is our Coordinator of the Domestic and Gender-Based Violence Prevention Initiative, which she will continue to lead. She has over 20 years of experience in the field of trauma and is a Licensed Clinical Social Worker. Michele is a lifelong Cambridge resident and has been in the DHSP Workforce Development Department for the past 15 years as a Case Manager. The CSD is  also in the process of hiring a clinical consultant to assist in the development of policies and procedures for responders as well as a guide for referral sources. The department has ordered two electric vehicles that its responders will use to respond to calls, and the Director of Emergency Communications has been working to get approval for certain calls to be diverted to the CSD instead of police. 

Finally, HEART, a community non-profit, has submitted a proposal and scope of services for $300,000 of ARPA funding from the City and CSD expects the review of this request to be completed shortly, followed by the drawing up a contract for services with HEART. 

If you have questions about the Cambridge Community Safety Department, contact Liz Speakman at 617-349-3290 Email: espeakman@cambridgema.gov


Page was posted on 2/28/2023 3:52 PM
Page was last modified on 9/28/2023 5:32 PM
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