CIT Services

It’s Okay to ASK for a CIT Officer

The CIT program is a service to our community, so don’t be afraid to use it. If you find yourself in a situation where you need to call law enforcement to intervene with a person experiencing a mental health crisis, it’s okay to request a CIT officer.

How Family and Friends Can Assist CIT Officers When a Mental Health Crisis Occurs

Mental health crises are stressful for all parties involved. Some preparation before the crisis will help your friend or loved-one get the care needed as soon as possible.

  • Find out if CIT is part of your police department.
  • When calling for police assistance, ask for a CIT officer.
  • Keep a current list of medications and doctors’ names and offer it to the CIT officer when he/she arrives.
  • Meet the CIT officer outside if possible and fully explain the crisis and what you would like to happen.
  • Make the CIT officer(s) aware of anything you know that upsets the person in the crisis.
  • Keep all guns out of the home.
  • When the CIT officer arrives, advise them if the person is armed or has access to weapons. Remember, when weapons are involved, police concentrate on the possible threat of violence until it is neutralized.
  • Understand, the CIT officer(s) will probably ask you to wait in an area away from the person in a crisis. Let the officer do his or her job and only offer assistance if asked.
  • Be prepared to go to the hospital — but remember all CIT calls do not necessarily mean a trip to the hospital.
  • Get to know your police department. Introduce your family member or friend to the police when they are not in crisis. Call your police department and have CIT officer stop by your house when he/she has time or go to the police station when a CIT officer will be there.
  • Let your family member know the police are there to help.

Educate yourself about your family members’ or friends’ mental illness by requesting information from the NAMI Scranton and Northeast Region, an affiliate of theNational Alliance on Mental Illness.


Raymond T. Hayes

  • Retired Sgt, Pennsylvania State Police
  • NEPA CIT, The Advocacy Alliance
  • MHFA Instructor
  • Criminal Justice Instructor, Keystone College (Retired)
  • Public Safety Director, City of Scranton (Former)
  • Co-Chair Mayor’s Taskforce on Law Enforcement and Mental Illness
  • Public Safety Director, Keystone College (Former)
  • Founding Member Scranton CIT
  • Board Member, Lackawanna Susquehanna Behavioral Health Intellectual Disabilities/Early Intervention Program

Marie Onukiavage 

  • NEPA CIT, The Advocacy Alliance
  • MHFA Instructor 
  • Executive Director, NAMI Northeast Region, PA
  • Founding Member Scranton CIT

Cherianne Scala 

  • NEPA CIT Coordinator, The Advocacy Alliance
  • MHFA Instructor 
  • Certified CIT Coordinator, CIT International
  • Management of Aggressive Behavior Instructor

John Chilleri 

  • NEPA CIT, The Advocacy Alliance
  • Retired Police Academy Director for the Pennsylvania Municipal Police Academy at Lackawanna College 
  • Retired certified Pennsylvania Municipal Police Training Commission Instructor
  • Retired Sergeant Moosic Police Department
  • PA Department of Health Emergency Medical Technician
  • Management of Aggressive Behavior Instructor
  • MHFA Instructors
  • Certified CIT Coordinator, CIT International

NEPA CIT Steering Committee

The Steering Committee is comprised of organizations and individuals
representing a wide range of disciplines and perspectives, who have operational
decision-making authority for their respective agencies and who possess a strong interest in improving the law enforcement and first responders’ relationships with persons with behavioral health issues. The committee member’s goal is to cultivate the growth and development of the Crisis Intervention Team (CIT) program in Northeastern Pennsylvania.

Steering Committee Duties:

  •  Access the strengths and weaknesses of the program and interagency
    relationships between law enforcement, first responders, and the mental
    health community, while making appropriate recommendations for
  •  Assist in the implementation of the training programs that help improve
    the effectiveness of law enforcement and first responders.
  • Provide leadership and advice in the facilitation of CIT programs by
    playing a fundamental role in the design, evaluation, and implementation
    of the CIT curriculum as it relates to individual jurisdiction
  • Monitor and address the ever-changing needs of communities and
    recommend continuing education programs to meet these needs.
  • Review systemic issues, such as agency policies, procedures, protocols,
    and service gaps in the law enforcement and mental health services.
  • Ensure CIT sustainability through times of leadership changes in partner
  • Safeguard the integrity and fidelity to the CIT Core Elements and serve
    as CIT ambassadors and promoters of the concept of the CIT Program
    within their communities and beyond.

Bruce Beauvais, Operation Manager, PA Ambulance

Lance M. Benedict, Sheriff, Susquehanna County

Donald Bergman, Chief, University of Scranton Police Department

Tim Betti, Warden, Lackawanna County Prison

Thomas Carroll,  Chief of Police, Scranton

John Chilleri,  NEPA CIT, The Advocacy Alliance

Scott Constantini, Director of Behavioral Health Wright Center

Harry Coleman, Attorney

Owen Dougherty, Recovery Supports Manager/Community Liaison, The Wright Center

Ray Hayes, NEPA CIT, The Advocacy Alliance

Barbara Durkin, Director of Lackawanna/Susquehanna County Drug and Alcohol Programs

Steve Eltz, NEPA CIT, Peer Specialist, The Advocacy Alliance

Michelle Matyevich,  Community Intervention Center

Mark McAndrew, Lackawanna County Sheriff’s Office

Harold Paul Murphy, Training Supervisor, Center for Public Safety

Sinead O’Hare, Healing Within Counselors and Psychotherapy, PLLC

Marie Onukiavage, NEPA CIT, The Advocacy  Alliance, NAMI Northeast Region PA

Mark Powell, District Attorney, Lackawanna County

Judith Price, First Assistant District Attorney, Lackawanna County

Cherianne Scala,  NEPA CIT Coordinator, The Advocacy Alliance

Edward Shoener, Deacon, Diocese of Scranton, St. Peters Cathedral

Kristen Simpson,  Director of Crisis and Warm Hand Off, Scranton Counseling Center

Timothy Trently, Chief of Police, Archbald Borough, President Lackawanna County Chiefs’ of Police

Sarah Wodder, Ed.D, President/CEO, Scranton Counseling Center

NEPA CIT Planning Team

The planning team provides advice and guidance on developing the necessary recommendations and deliverables of the Northeast Pennsylvania Crisis Intervention Team (NEPA CIT) training programs.

This Team is comprised of individuals representing a wide range of disciplines and perspectives who have demonstrated strong commitment to the delivery and sustainability of the CIT Program. This group includes individuals from law enforcement, first responders, corrections professionals, advocacy, consumer, family, and mental health professionals. 

Planning Duties:

  •  Provide leadership and guidance to the work plan for CIT related
    initiatives, programs, and related training sessions.
  • Collaborate on all aspects of CIT training, including scheduling,
    curriculum and ancillary tasks as requested.
  • Evaluate the fidelity and effectiveness of the CIT and MHFA trainings.
  • Utilize the data obtained from the Pre/Post tests summary and course
    evaluations to identify strengths, weakness, and suggest modifications to
    safeguard the fidelity to the CIT model.
  • Participate in the execution and coordination of NEPA CIT Programs to
    include the CIT Training Week and other educational/informational
    presentations and programs.

Bob Carpenter – Emergency Medical Services of Northeastern Pennsylvania, Inc.

John Chilleri – Crisis Intervention Team, The Advocacy Alliance

Joe Dombroski – Scranton PD

Steve Eltz – Crisis Intervention Team and Peer Specialist, The Advocacy Alliance

Robert Getz – Archbald Community Ambulance & Rescue Squad

Briana Hollenbeck – Pennsylvania State Police

Ray Hayes – Crisis Intervention Team, The Advocacy Alliance

Rob Hegedus – Scranton Police Department

Danny Kapacs – Dunmore Police Department

Michelle Matyjevich – Community Intervention Center

Marie Onukiavage – Crisis Intervention Team, The Advocacy Alliance, NAMI Northeast Region PA

Sarah Petzold  – LSW, MSW, CTP – Healing Within Counselors and Psychotherapy, PLLC

Tom Richardson – Dunmore Police Department

Eugene Ruddy – Lackawanna County Prison

Kevin Rude – University of Scranton Police Department

Cherianne Scala – Crisis Intervention Team, The Advocacy Alliance

Paul Tomcyzk – Scranton PD

John Trama – Lackawanna County Prison

Alexander Williams – Katie’s Place Clubhouse

Participating Departments & Agencies

  • The Advocacy Alliance
  • Allied Services
  • Archbald Police Department
  • Blakely Police Department
  • Bushkill Volunteer Fire Company
  • Carbondale Police Department
  • Clarks Summit Fire Company
  • Clarks Summit Police Department
  • Cottage Hose Company
  • Dalton Borough Police Department
  • Dalton Fire Department
  • Dickson City Police Department
  • Dunmore Police Department
  • Emergency Medical Services of Northeastern Pennsylvania, Inc.
  • Federal Correctional Institution, Otisville
  • Geisinger
  • Greenfield Township Police Department
  • Hazleton City Police Department
  • Hideout Public Safety
  • Jefferson Township Volunteer Ambulance
  • Kalahari Resorts & Conventions – Poconos
  • Kingston Forty Fort Fire Department
  • Kingston Township Police Department
  • Lackawanna College Public Safety
  • Lackawanna District Attorney’s Office
  • Lackawanna County Juvenile Detention
  • Lackawanna County Mental Health Treatment Court
  • Lackawanna County Prison
  • Lackawanna County Probation & Parole
  • Lackawanna County Sheriff’s Department
  • Lackawanna County 911
  • Lehman Pike Emergency Medical Services
  • Mayfield Police Department
  • Merakey
  • Moosic Police Department
  • Moscow Police Department
  • NAMI Northeast Region PA
  • Nanticoke City Police Department
  • National Park Service – Deleware Water Gap Recreation Area
  • Old Forge Police Department
  • Olyphant Police Department
  • Pathstone Corporation
  • Pennsylvania Ambulance
  • Pennsylvania State Police
  • Pennsylvania State Parole
  • Roaring Brook Township Police Department
  • Scranton Counseling Center
  • Scranton Police Department
  • Scranton School District
  • State Correctional Institute at Waymart
  • South Abington Police Department
  • Susquehanna County Correctional Facility
  • Susquehanna County Sheriff’s Department
  • Taylor Police Department
  • Tunkhannock Township Police Department
  • United States Probation Office
  • University of Scranton Police Department
  • US Department of Justice Federal Bureau of Prisons, USP CANAAN
  • US Department of Veteran Affairs Police
  • Wayne County Correctional Facility
  • Wayne Memorial Hospital
  • Waverly Police Department
  • Forest City Police Department
  • Hanover Township Fire Department
  • Greater Hazelton Ambulance
  • Geisinger Wyoming Valley