Area leaders and agency representatives say mental health and other social services may be severely affected by potential reductions in the state budget.
Alton Police Chief Chris Sullivan said cuts to mental health providers could have a serious impact on the community, his department and other law enforcement providers.
"If the social service agencies and mental health agencies are no longer able to do their functions, then obviously police departments will become a backstop for those issues," Sullivan said. "When society chooses not to deal with the issue, it becomes a police issue."
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