Newton police start new program to help officers interact with citizens with special needs

Newton police start new program to help officers interact with citizens with special needs

NEWTON, NC (WBTV) - Police in Newton are starting a program they hope will help officers when they interact with people with special needs.

Officials say the voluntary Special Needs Identification Program was designed to alert officers when they are interacting with citizens who have medical conditions or disabilities those officers need to know about.

Anyone who would like to participate in the program can sign up at the Newton Police Department at 411 North Main Avenue. There, the participant will be asked to fill out a form with their name, address, and any special needs they may have or medications they need to take.

Once registered, those participants will be issued a silicone wristband and an ID card that officers can scan for information about that person.

"There are some situations where a person with special needs may be unable to communicate with our officers during tense circumstances," said Newton Police Chief Don Brown. "Registering for this program and wearing the designated wristband will give our officers an immediate heads-up that the person is registered with our Special Needs Identification Program and that information about their needs is on file with the police department."

For more information about the program, you can contact the Newton Police Department at 828-465-7430.

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