In 2020, Virginia State legislators created the mental health awareness response and community understanding services (Marcus) alert system to promote a behavioral health response to individuals in crisis, including those with substance abuse disorder and developmental disabilities.
The goals of the MARCUS Alert System is to increase:
Access to care for individuals in crisis
Access to timely treatment
Sense of dignity
Public recognition of community mental health needs
Likelihood of physical confrontation
Arrests, detention, and use-of-force
Injuries during crisis events
Need for mental health treatment in jail
Every locality in Virginia will have a voluntary database available to the E-911 Communications Center and Marcus Alert systems. The goal is to reduce unfavorable outcomes and connect individuals to appropriate treatment or resources through a response appropriate to a given situation – that response may only involve mental health clinicians or a combination of law enforcement and clinicians.
To register an individual with the MARCUS Alert system who resides in the City of Fredericksburg, download