Find alternatives to calling the San Diego 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.
- 211 San Diego
- Referral service connecting San Diego County residents to shelter and other community services.
- 211 or (800) 211-2111
- St. Vincent de Paul Village
- Wrap around service and referrals for people experiencing hunger and homelessness in San Diego. Provides shelter and shelter referrals, lunch line, behavioral and physical medical care, and transportation services through the Travelers Aid Society.
- Joan Kroc Center
- Case management and referrals into the Coordinated Entry System for city shelters for adults with children. Lunch line daily at this location. Pick up badge for services here or at the Day Center.
- 8 a.m. – 4:30 p.m., Mon. – Fri.
- 1501 Imperial Ave., San Diego, CA 92101
- (619) 233-8500
- Neil Good Day Center
- Providing food, showers, respite shelter, and referrals to other social services, including entry into the Coordinated Entry System for city shelters for adults without children. In-person services recommended.
- 7:30 a.m. – 4 p.m., Mon. – Fri.; 6 a.m. – 2 p.m. weekends
- 299 17th St., San Diego, CA 92101
- (619) 230-7390
- La Posada de Guadalupe
- Men’s short and long-term housing program for homeless men and employed farm workers, hosted through Catholic Charities. Sober living facility, provides AA sessions, medical referrals, case management, and necessities.
- Call M/W/F between 9 a.m. – 10 a.m. for admission
- 2478 Impala Drive, Carlsbad CA 92010
- (760) 929-2322
- Nueva Vida Haven
- Emergency shelter for homeless women and their children, up to age 17 Call for availability.
- 7 p.m. – 7 a.m. daily
- 120 Elm Street San Diego, CA 92101
- North County LGBTQ Resource Center
- Supports, builds, educates, and improves the relationships of the LGBT community and allies. Services include youth shelter, case management, substance abuse treatment, assistance with name and gender marker changes, support groups, mental health intakes and referrals.
- 3220 Mission Ave Suite #2, Oceanside, CA 92058
- 12 p.m. – 8 p.m., Mon. – Fri.
- (760) 994-1690
- San Diego LGBT Community Center
- Offers referrals and resources for the LGBTQ+ community. Emergency services including HIV testing, food assistance, emergency housing for transition age youth, behavioral health services, and case management.
- 3909 Centre Street, San Diego, CA 92103
- Emergency help desk:
- (619) 800-4252 (9 a.m. – 4 p.m., Mon. – Fri.)
- (619) 800-4216 (4 p.m. – 9 p.m., Mon. – Fri, & Saturday)
- General: (619) 692-2077
- Main line and physical locations closed due to COVID-19
- Community Helpline
- Helps callers work through feelings that range from loneliness & depression, to suicide. Serves all of California.
- 8 a.m. – 8 p.m., 7 days a week.
- (877) 541-2525
- Deaf Community Services
- Offers comprehensive outpatient behavioral health services to Deaf, Deaf-Blind, late-deafened, and hard of hearing adults, youth and families in San Diego County. Services are designed to provide culturally and linguistically appropriate care and ensure the highest quality of therapy services possible.
- VB: (619) 550-3436
- V: (619) 398-2441
- NAMI San Diego Helpline
- County-wide, confidential, family and peer-staffed support phone line for individuals with mental illness and their loved ones. Provides non-crisis phone support and referrals and increases knowledge of mental illness, resources and related issues.
- 10 a.m. – 5 p.m., Monday – Friday
- (619) 543-1434 or (800) 523-5933
- North County Mobile Crisis Response Team
- Mobile response team made up of mental health professionals, who can be dispatched to respond to urgent behavioral health concerns. Currently serves only the North Coastal region. Offer assessment for hospitalization, intervention, and linkage to community resources. Provide rapid crisis intervention to address, de-escalate and stabilize in least restrictive environment possible. Dispatch is through the ACCESS Crisis Line, which also dispatches the Psychiatric Emergency Response Team, which includes police. Callers should specifically request MCRT. Dispatch requires that person is receptive to help. Will not be dispatched if situation involves immediate threat of violence, or person in crisis is intoxicated to level that there is a threat of violence. In these cases, counselor will recommend police dispatch, but have stated they will not dispatch police without caller consent.
- 1 (888) 724-7240 (24/7)
- San Diego ACCESS Crisis Line
- Suicide hotline serving San Diego County. Provides mental health crisis intervention, information and referral to mental health services in San Diego County, including referrals to mental health care professionals who accept Medi-Cal and serve people who lack health insurance. Calls are FREE and answered by trained professionals. Service is available in multiple languages. Offers mobile assistance *only in North Coastal Region* through Mobile Crisis Response Team, a team of mental health professionals that does not include police and can provide on-site assistance in 1-2 hours. Mobile assistance in areas other than Northern Coastal Region available through Psychiatric Emergency Response Team (PERT) – however, this team will be accompanied by police, or may dispatch police if PERT not available.
- 1 (888) 724-7240 (24/7)
Domestic Violence & Sexual Assault
- Carol’s House
- Emergency shelter for all victims of domestic violence and their children. Offering residents a safe home for 45 to 60 days. Services include legal advocacy, case management, individual and group counseling, parenting classes, therapeutic child center, and the possibility to be placed in the transitional housing program. Free.
- 1 (877) 633-1112 (24/7)
- Center for Community Solutions – Project Safehouse
- 24-hour toll free County-wide crisis line for crisis intervention and information referrals related to domestic violence, sexual assault, and stalking in San Diego. Also provides legal services, advocacy and counseling.
- 1 (888) 385-4657 (24/7)
- (858) 272-5777 (Office)
- Women’s Resource Center
- Provides supportive services, counseling, shelter and education to North San Diego County women, children and men involved in or threatened by domestic violence or sexual assault. Crisis intervention, safety planning, emergency food and services, shelter, and more.
- (760) 757-3500 (24/7)
- YWCA of San Diego
- Gender-inclusive Becky’s House domestic violence programs encompass a 24-hour crisis hotline, emergency shelter, transitional housing, legal support, and integrated services. bilingual hotline provides crisis counseling, and critical resource referrals for victims and the community.
- (619) 234-3164 (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.
- California Coalition for Youth
- Statewide emergency response system for youth (ages 12-24) and families in crisis with access to over 5,500 free or low-cost resources for youth and families in crisis.
- 1 (800) 843-5200 (24/7 Crisis Line)
- San Diego Youth Services – Youth Emergency Shelter
- Emergency shelter serving youth ages 13-17. Providing a safe home and services to help youth return to their families or find alternative housing. For youth who have no safe living arrangement or are victims of physical or sexual abuse, neglect, child abuse or exploitation.
- 1 (866) 752-2327 (PLACE-2-STAY) (24/7)
- TAY Academy
- Inclusive youth-led drop-in center serving youth ages 14-25. Provides trauma informed services and comprehensive support including substance use intervention, community referrals, sexual health resources, laundry, and food. Can link victims of crime ages 18-25 to transitional housing.
- 11 a.m. – 3 p.m., Tuesday – Friday
- 2220 Broadway, San Diego, CA 92102
- (619) 632-8126
- Elder Law and Advocacy
- Provides free and low-cost civil legal services, Medicare and Medicare related counseling and advocacy, referrals to community senior service providers and community education. The majority of services are offered at no-cost to qualifying seniors.
- (858) 565-1392
- Union of Pan Asian Communities
- Serves Iraqi, Chaldean, Filipino, African American, Somali and Latinx seniors (60 years and over) with outreach, engagement and education for prevention and early intervention of mental illness and mental health challenges. Provides education in chronic diseases, diabetes, pain management as well as mental health and wellness. Additionally provides socialization opportunities.
- (619) 232-6454
- Free To Thrive
- Provides mobile, holistic and trauma-informed legal services to victims and survivors of human trafficking. Clients are also connected to a variety of supportive services. Does collaborate with law enforcement agencies for purposes of seeking justice for clients.
- (619) 693-6361
- Para Español: (619) 354-8247
- La Maestra Community Health Center
- Provides assistance and support to survivors of domestic violence, human trafficking, sex assault and other crimes. The legal advocates do not act as attorneys but they can give you information and referrals that will help you make informed decisions. Can also assist with asylum, DACA and immigration applications, public benefits, and shelter placement.
- (619) 564-7010
- Legal Aid Society of San Diego
- Legal Help with Housing, Debt Collection, Repossession, Sales Contracts, Housing Discrimination, Family Law, Immigration, Federal Tax Problems, CalWorks/CalFresh/General Relief, Conservatorships, Restraining Orders, SSI. Accepts collect calls, services in Spanish available.
- 1 (877) 534-2524
- Methamphetamine Strike Force Hotline*
- Completely confidential; call to report users, dealers, labs; call to get info on prevention, intervention, treatment. Secure voice mail after business hours.
- 1 (877) 662-6384
- *Please note, this is a task force that includes specialized law enforcement officers.
- San Diego ACCESS Crisis Line
- Provides information and referral to County Drug and Alcohol treatment and recovery services for adults, adolescents, and pregnant and parenting women who are receiving Medi-Cal or who do not have health insurance. Calls are FREE and answered by trained professionals. Service is available in multiple languages.
- 1 (888) 724-7240 (24/7)
- Press 4 for referrals for substance and addiction services
- Union of Pan Asian Communities
- An Outpatient non-residential Substance Abuse Disorder treatment program specifically focused on Asian and Pacific Islander (API) adults 18+ ,Transitional Age Youth, refugees, immigrants and other underserved populations who reside in San Diego County. Services are offered in various languages, including Spanish. Clients are eligible for services if they have Medi-Cal, Medi-Medi, or are unfunded.
- (619) 521-5720
Please consider using these alternatives to calling the San Diego 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.