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In Atlanta, you can dial 311 as an alternative to calling the police

Atlantans now have an alternative to calling 911 when they see someone struggling with mental health, extreme poverty and a range of other non-emergency quality of life concerns.

The Policing Alternative and Diversion Initiative, or PAD, has a 311 line and sends out response teams to help people with medical care, housing and financial issues.

Lisa Hagen of WABE reports.

This article was originally published on WBUR.org.

Copyright 2021 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.