In an effort to help the public identify, understand and respond to people who may be experiencing a mental health emergency, the Cheyenne Police Department is hosting a free Mental Health First Aid class on February 24.

"A lot of times it can be confusing," said Officer Kevin Malatesta. "People aren't sure what to do."

"The purpose of this training is to give people some basic training, almost so you can think of it as CPR, for working through that situation until aid can arrive or the situation is resolved," he added.

The eight-hour course, which is being taught by Peak Wellness Center, will cover a range of scenarios, from the man shouting to himself to the woman threatening suicide.

"They're not training people to become psychologists or on-the-spot shrinks," said Malatesta. "This is really to give them the information to deal with the problem at the moment and to do it in a way that doesn't make the situation any worse and helps protect that person and anybody else involved."

Those interested in attending the class should call Alan Ness at (307) 634-9653 ext. 1134. The class is limited to 30 people.

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