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Notes From the Field - Peer Support: A Valuable Tool in Assisting Mental Health Consumers After a Crisis

NCJ Number
Officer Luke Bonkiewicz
Date Published
November 2019
2 pages

This NIJ "Notes from the Field" article discusses the Respond, Empower, Advocate, and Listen (R.E.A.L.) diversion program where law enforcement officers refer individuals to the Mental Health Association of Nebraska and its team of peer specialists.


In this article from NIJ's "Notes from the Field" series, which allows leading voices in the field to share their strategies for responding to the most pressing issues on America's streets today, Police Officer Luke Bonkiewicz of the Lincoln (NE) Police Department describes his agency's experience with the Respond, Empower, Advocate, and Listen (R.E.A.L.) diversion program. Individuals in the R.E.A.L. program are referred by law enforcement officers to the Mental Health Association of Nebraska. A team of peer specialists works closely with law enforcement officials, community corrections officers, and other local human service providers to offer diversion from higher levels of care and to provide a recovery model form of community support.

Date Published: November 1, 2019