Police officers are trained to be police, not counselors. But they frequently encounter people in their jobs who are in mental health crisis, and the usual police techniques would only escalate the situation.
So more police agencies are having their people trained in crisis intervention, and crisis intervention teams (CITs) are now scattered across the land.
Oregon trainers are now offering a higher level of training, for Certified Crisis Intervention Specialists (CCIS). The idea is to help get people in crisis to the proper services, instead of into jail.