Jackson County is giving Independence some help for a program to address a relatively small number of people who account for a large number of police calls.

The County Legislature this week approved $55,000, from the county’s Combat anti-drug sales tax, for the Independence Police Department’s Crisis Intervention Team. That program targets people with both mental illness and drug issues, with the aim of reducing violent crime.

Officer Luis Virgil said over a year just five people accounted for 591 calls to 911 but the CIT program has made a big difference.

“Those same individuals are only responsible for five calls in the last year,” he told legislators.

He added, “This has given us some hope that we can get them the help they really need.”

IPD works with Centerpoint Medical Center, Comprehensive Mental Health Services, the city’s Municipal Court and the Jackson County Drug Court in this program.