We promote and support the co-response field and its practitioners through advocacy, collaboration, training and the development of professional standards.
The University of Washington’s 2023 Report to the Legislature, “What and Where is Co-Response in Washington State.”
The Co-Responder Outreach Alliance (CROA) is a statewide organization of field experts consisting of first responders, behavioral health professionals, and project managers working in co-response programs.
The organization was created in 2018 and represents police and fire agencies from across Washington State. CROA has a three part mission: (1) to enhance the understanding of co-response programs and co-response best practices in Washington State (2) to promote the use of co-response to assist individuals with behavioral health issues (3) to advocate for laws and policies that support co-response where appropriate—and other programs and approaches when not. CROA is nonpartisan and non ideological. Members support practical, real world approaches and opportunities to collaborate.
Co-Response is recognized as an evidence based best practice when responding to people in crisis and coordinating care; all co-responders have access to support and resources they need to do their jobs effectively.
If you are interested in becoming a member, please Email Us
Frequently Asked Questions
What is co-response?
Co-response refers to partnerships between first responders (police, fire, EMS, 911 centers) and human service professionals (such as social workers, community health workers, or peers). Co-response operates within the 911 system and typically involves behavioral health related calls and calls involving complex, chronic medical conditions. They provide in- the-moment response and follow-up community-based care coordination. Co-response can involve direct 911 response, outreach to target populations, and/or follow-up depending on each agency’s program design. Co-response programs draw on combined expertise and trusted community-based workers to de-escalate situations, intervene as appropriate, and support people with complex behavioral health and medical needs. The ultimate goal is to connect people with appropriate community resources to reduce the use of emergency services.
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What does CROA do?
CROA is a group of co-responder agencies who meet quarterly to discuss how their programs are functioning, challenges they are facing, legislation changes that effect co-responders, and generally share support for the work being done.
how can I become a member?
CROA is transitioning to a paid membership organization during the summer of 2023 and welcomes both individual and agency members. People working in the co-response field are encouraged to join, but membership is open to anyone interested and supportive in behavioral health outreach. See our members page for details.
What agencies have co-responders?
Many fire and police agencies, in Washington state, work with behavioral health and other healthcare professionals. For an interactive map of programs in Washington state, click here: