Are you feeling the holiday spirit yet? With a week until Hanukkah, days until Christmas, and a hop, skip, and a jump til Kwanzaa, we won’t lie: we’re in our ZONE.

But whether you’re celebrating a holiday or not, it’s important to be mindful that tensions are high right now. While this can be a festive time for some, the holiday blues are also a very real thing. It can put a mental health strain on the best of us.

And when you or a loved one begins experiencing a mental health or behavioral crisis, the right response to it is everything.

Having someone who is trained to de-escalate a situation rather than criminalize it can be a matter of life or death–especially for people of color. This is why, this Wednesday, we’re ecstatic to be re-releasing our updated community and alternative response guide.  

By ensuring that you and your loved ones know how to find and get the right response to a mental health or behavioral crisis, we’re dropping 911 down the list as your first call. Instead, by alerting you to first response teams in your area, we’re reducing the risk of police violence in a mental health emergency and getting you (and those you love) home for the holidays.

Will you help us spread the word?

“Invest in the human soul. Who knows, it might be a diamond in the rough.”
— Mary McLeoud Bethune

Community Spotlight


In our community, we team up when needed.

And as we underwent the massive project of updating our community guide, we teamed UP. Volunteers showed up for our organization, you, and the safety of our country as they worked tirelessly over 80 hours to compile as many community and alternative response teams as possible. Without them, our updated guide would not have happened. So this week, we’re shining all the light and praise on them!

Here are the names of our volunteers:

Cassandra, Arkansas
Jax, New York
LaKeitha, Arizona
Veranda, Tennessee
Jennifer, Arizona
Stacia, Nevada
Natasha, Texas
Regina, Mississippi
Makeda. North Carolina
Hevenile, Tennessee
Daryl, New York
Nina, Iowa
Kayla, Mississippi

Legislative Policies to Watch:

New Jersey A 1515

This new bill proposes to give civilian police oversight boards in 4 major New Jersey cities the ability to subpoena witnesses and statements when police have a complaint filed against them.

What are your thoughts on giving the community more power in holding officers accountable?


Article of the Week


Check out what we’re reading and make sure to hit reply and tell us your thoughts!

Brief from the Bazelon Center for Mental Health Law discussing why alternatives to police response are important for the Black community.

Advancing An Alternative to Police: Community-Based Services for  Black People with Mental Illness

A Mental Health Tip For You!

We’re smack in the middle of the holidays right now, and there’s no denying it: a LOT is going on. But just because the world encourages a “go, go, go” mentality doesn’t mean you have to abide by it. Instead, ask yourself what the right response for your needs  are right now.


Do you really have the mental capacity to go to that family dinner? Have you been paying attention to your needs as you prioritize moving around that elf on the shelf?


Whatever it is, as you move through the next few weeks, remember to take a moment to stop and check in with yourself. Don’t just prioritize the people around you, but prioritize yourself.


Need a space to connect with those who just “get it”? Try tuning into the Unapologetically Black Unicorn podcast. It’s a space for powerhouses like you, pushing for liberation and preserving Black mental health hosted by our good Sis, Keris Myrick.

Spread Some Blessings!

The consequences of police violence extend far beyond the loss of life. For families affected, it’s the loss of income, the sacrifice of basic necessities, and the start of a high-cost legal fight. If you have the capacity, consider donating to 1M4. Proceeds help support impacted families and sustain the work of 1M4 toward ending police violence for good.


As an organization committed to supporting families impacted by police violence, we’ve done our research and seen the data. We know that at least 25% of fatal police encounters happen as an ill-prepared response to persons experiencing a mental health emergency.

We’ve gotta change that.
We’re committed to changing that.

Not only to save lives but also to avoid the pain many impacted families face in the aftermath. The pain of gathering together for the holidays only to not see a face that should be there. No mother, family, or community deserves the burden of that. And we can help avoid it by ensuring the right response is deployed for mental health crises.

Only two more days until our response guide drops . Spread the word.

More details on how to access the directory to follow. Keep an eye on your email and be sure you are following us on your preferred social media platform.

Your Sis In All Of This,