Amid surge in calls, Missoula's Mobile Support Team asked to take budget cut

David Erickson

Amid a drastic surge in the number of calls they respond to, Missoula’s Mobile Support Team has been asked to reduce its budget for the next fiscal year, according to the program’s manager.

John Petroff of the Missoula Fire Department is tasked with leading the team that was developed at this time last year to divert emergency department and jail visits for people in the community who are frequent, familiar faces to emergency responders.

He gave an update to the Reserve Street Public Working Group last week about what the unit has gone through over the past 12 months.

“Last year, we were running about 50 calls a month,” he explained. “At that time, we had only been in operation a couple months. We had 181 calls ran last month. So our average went from 50 a year ago to now our average is 165 calls. It’s been a crazy learning experience for me.”

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The number of Calls for the Missoula Mobile Support Team during a six-month pilot period.

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