Community Support Division puts spotlight on mental health
May 24, 2022
EAST LANSING, Mich. — May is Mental Health Awareness Month, a time to educate, provide support, and work to reduce the stigma that many people with a mental illness face. MSU Police and Public Safety’s Community Support Division works every day, year-round, toward this mission.
“I think there’s a stigma today about mental health and it’s negative in tone,” said Detective David Isabell of the Community Support Division. “I want the community to know that it’s okay to feel stressed or anxious while you experience these feelings. It’s okay to ask for help.”
The Community Support Division works closely with different mental health-focused units on campus, including MSU Counseling & Psychiatric Services (CAPS), the MSU Center for Survivors, MSU Safe Place, and the MSU Resource Center for Persons with Disabilities.
When someone reaches out to MSU DPPS for help in this aspect, they are given several on- and off-campus resources.
“I believe that it’s important to provide these resources so that we can empower the students and educate them on what is available to them as MSU students, and to give support to give them the feeling that they’re not alone,” said Isabell.
Detective Sydnee Zienta says MSU DPPS is different from other police departments because of its ability to have a unit that focuses on mental health specifically.
“I think we’re unique in the fact that we have a bureau within the police department that specializes in this and can assist in partnerships outside of the police department and help guide students, whether we can help them or we know the resources that can,” said Zienta.
MSU DPPS’s Community Support Division consists of three units: the Community Care Unit, Investigations Unit, and the Special Victims Unit. The goal is to provide trauma-informed, inclusive, and accessible services to MSU students, faculty, and staff.
Community Support Division members also participate in community outreach and training programs to provide awareness and improve overall safety on campus.
You can learn more about the Community Support Division's operations here.
Dana Whyte, Spokesperson, MSU Police and Public Safety
Inspector Chris Rozman, Public Information Officer, MSU Police and Public Safety