Find alternatives to calling the Rochester Police Department.
Typically, people call the police because they are experiencing or perceive an emergency and need immediate assistance. In order to provide the most effective alternatives to calling the police or 911, unless otherwise indicated, the resources included here are limited to those that offer immediate assistance through emergency or crisis services.
These resources may be obligated to call police in the case of an immediate risk of harm to the caller or another, child abuse, or abuse of a vulnerable adult. Where we know or suspect that a resource may work in cooperation with law enforcement or involve them beyond what is required by law, we acknowledge that in the listing.
These resources are not intended to cover all situations, only to provide the services described. If you are in danger of immediate harm and feel safe doing so, call 911.
- Community Food Cupboard
- Emergency and ongoing food support for qualifying families and individuals in zip codes 14604, 14605, 14609, 14617, 14621, 14622.
- 9 a.m. – Noon, Mon., Wed., Fri. Appointment required – call to make appointment.
- 11 Nester Street, Rochester, NY 14621
- (585) 325-4990
- Food Not Bombs
- Volunteer-run group that recovers resources to create free vegetarian and vegan meals in the local community. Food stands set up throughout Rochester. Stands also have hygiene materials. Donations can be brought to any location.
- List of food stand locations can be found here
- Mobile food pantry. Provides a market on wheels program that delivers food directly to communities in need through partnerships with agencies in underserved areas on specific dates.
- Registration required for Monroe County distributions – register and find locations near you here
- (585) 328-3380
- Volunteers of America Upstate New York
- Offers emergency shelter for families and individuals experiencing homelessness. Provides supportive services including case management and service coordination, permanent and supportive housing, rapid re-housing and homelessness prevention services, employment assistance, and residential re-entry programs.
- 214 Lake Ave., Rochester, NY 14608
- (585) 647-1150
- Monroe Mobile Crisis Team
- Mobile psychiatric emergency team for individuals and families within Monroe County who are experiencing a crisis in mental health. Services are designed to divert individuals who are not at risk of harming themselves, as well as their families, from the county’s psychiatric emergency departments. A team of mental health professionals go to the individual or family in their home, place of employment, school, etc. There are no age restrictions. Services include crisis intervention, interim health treatment, transportation, and linkage to other service providers. Response usually within an hour if during business hours. Team arrives in unmarked vehicle, no police or ambulance.
- 8 a.m. – 10 p.m.
- (585) 529-3721
Domestic Violence & Sexual Assault
- RESTORE Sexual Assault Services
- Services include: Crisis intervention for sexual assault survivors and their significant others. Provides short-term counseling (six to eight sessions), support through medical examinations and treatment, advocacy and support during interaction with law enforcement, court accompaniment, Individual consultations with professionals, community education programs and professional training programs. 24/7 crisis hotline. A program of Planned Parenthood. In Wyoming County, also offers services related to domestic violence.
- 114 University Avenue, Rochester, NY 14605
- Monroe County: (585) 546-2777 (24/7)
- Genesee, Livingston, Orleans & Wyoming Counties: 1 (800) 527-1757 (24/7)
- Willow Domestic Violence Center
- Provides a full-continuum of free and confidential services, including: 24/7 Crisis and Support Hotline, Short-term Counseling, Court Accompaniment, 40-bed Emergency Shelter, Children’s Programming, Prevention Education & Training. Serving the Rochester area. LGBTQ+ safe. All services are free and confidential.
- (585) 222-SAFE (7233) (24/7)
- Text: (585) 348-SAFE (7233) (24/7)
Please note, people answering these calls may be mandatory reporters, and required to make a report to CPS or law enforcement in certain situations. Learn about local mandatory reporter laws here.
- The Center for Youth
- Provides crisis intervention and counseling services for youth age 12-20. Emergency shelter, crisis hotline, crisis nursery, and emergency food cupboard all available at no cost. Both short- and long-term housing available through partnerships with local shelters. Case management provided for linkage to other necessary services.
- 905 Monroe Ave., Rochester, NY 14620
- (585) 271-7670 (24/7)
- Open Access – Delphi Rise
- Referral agency that assists people seeking recovery for substance and addiction issues. Walk in for services. Crisis intervention, re-entry, prevention, and out-patient programs.
- Not all services are free – insurance accepted, including Medicare and Medicaid – full list of providers available on website.
- 835 West Main Street, Rochester, NY 14611
- 585-467-2230, press 7
Please consider using these alternatives to calling the Rochester Police Department or 911 when faced with a situation that calls for de-escalation and/or intervention.
We have tried to indicate where police or law enforcement may work with the alternative resources listed; please let us know if you have any concerns about these resources.
Reimagine public safety. Don’t call the police.