THE FAMILY ASSISTANCE PROGRAM
On July 9, 2019, the Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors established the Family Assistance Program (FAP). The goal of this program is to improve compassionate communication and provide trauma-informed responses, services, and support to families who lose a loved one following an in-custody death or fatal use of force involving the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department (LASD). The FAP consists of trained Family Assistance Advocates (FAA) who receive and respond to these incidents 24 hours a day, seven days a week, whether it take place in custody or in community, hospital, or jail settings. FAAs support families, friends, and witnesses impacted by such incidents and provide relevant mental health services, burial costs, and other services when needed.
What FAP does
- Notify families of the death of a loved one;
- Address family and community trauma by early identification of mental health needs;
- Decrease severity of risk factors;
- Link affected individuals with needed mental health services and supportive services e.g., faith-based services and other social services as needed;
- Communicate and answer families’ questions regarding the aftermath of a death and ensure families are given timely, coordinated, and respectful information, including information about the investigative process;
- Provide Psychological First Aid, Grief Counseling, Case Consultation to affected families; and
- Provide families with burial expenses, if needed.
Who FAP Works With
FAP collaborates with other professionals from various agencies such as the Los Angeles County Sheriffs’ Department’s Homicide Bureau, Los Angeles County Medical Examiner-Coroner, Office of Inspector General, Auditor Controller, and many other entities to support and benefit the individual(s) experiencing trauma due to the death of a family member or friend.