by Gabrielle Mays, FOX 11 News

GREEN BAY (WLUK) -- Eight Green Bay police cars parked in front of Willow Creek Behavioral Health Hospital Thursday morning.

Inside, police officers were easy to spot and it was clear the department supported the new facility.

At the podium, police Chief Andrew Smith said, "Last year, officers responded and took into custody 595 different times individuals that were going through some type of emergency medical psychological difficulties."

And, that's where Officer Barb Gerarden comes in. She works as a temporary mental health officer and many times, the people she encounters need treatment.

"We encounter people everyday that are in crisis and it's really important to have the resources to be able to help them at the time they're in need," she said.

The police department plans to hire two full-time mental health officers and she's in the running for one of those positions.