Équipe mobile de référence et d’intervention en itinérance (ÉMRII)

In 2009, the Service de police de la Ville de Montréal created EMRII, in partnership with the Centre intégré universitaire de santé et de services sociaux of Centre-Sud-de-l’Île-de-Montréal (CIUSSS du Centre-Sud). This second-line service is made up of six police officers and five CIUSSS du Centre-Sud workers.

The purpose of EMRII is to reach the homeless, who are involved in repeat interventions with the police and display factors of vulnerability.

The members of this team also support or guide these individuals to the services appropriate to their needs, with the aim of improving their living conditions and facilitating their social re-integration.

Example of a case handled by EMRII

An individual had been detained 22 times, was transported by Urgences-santé several times, and was the subject of about 60 9-1-1 calls for inappropriate behaviours in a public place—all over a five-month period.

This case is typical for EMRII. There are several steps involved in dealing with such situations, as well as coordination with both health and social services and the justice system.

The power of partnerships

The partnership with the CIUSSS of Centre-Sud-de-l'Île-de-Montréal enabled a better understanding of the respective roles of each and thus to develop a suitable and respectful service offer for people in homelessness.

It allows better concerted action within the expertise, mandates and limits of each of the players (justice system, social and health services, community environment). It helps reduce the number of repeat interventions with the same people and indirectly reduces tensions resulting from cohabitation problems.

EMRII is a great example of the integration of police practices in a continuum of multi-sectoral services.


This mixed team is made up of duos, each of which a police officer and a worker from the CIUSSS du Center-Sud share the same patrol vehicle and operate throughout Montreal.


The mixed pairs of EMRII work Monday to Friday, daytime, depending on the opening hours of the regular and complementary services.

Service offering

The EMRII mixed duos guide the homeless who are the subject of repeat police interventions to support organizations (health care or social services, day centres, shelters, food banks, legal support, mediation and community resources). 

In addition, members of EMRII provide intensive follow-up with people experiencing chronic homelessness.

Find out more

Homeless people
People who are mentally disturbed or in crisis situations

Other innovative police practices at the SPVM
Containment and de-escalation training
Équipe de soutien aux urgences psychosociales (ÉSUP)
RIC (Réponse en intervention de crise) patrol officers

In November 2013, EMRII won an honourable mention at the Prix d’excellence du ministère de la Santé et des Services sociaux. The project CSSS Jeanne-Mance et SPVM : duo de choc! was presented in the Partnership category.

In May 2011, EMRII won the first prize (ex-aequo) at the Prix d'excellence Intersection, du ministère de la Sécurité publique.

In the media
Special report about EMRII - CTV, February 15, 2017
SPVM : dix ans d’intervention spécialisée auprès des itinérants - Radio-Canada, 30 septembre 2019
Un autre regard sur l’itinérance - Radio-Canada, 30 septembre 2019