Public safety personnel such as firefighters, paramedics, law enforcement, corrections and dispatchers, experience traumas and stressors on the job that are unlike other occupations. The Sask. First Responders’ Mental Health Committee was formed to work toward a common goal of reducing mental health stigma, improving access to resources and providing leadership and recommended practices that promote positive mental health for first responders across the province.
Saskfirstrespondersmentalhealth.ca is designed to help employers, workers, friends, and family members support mental health in the workplace. The website provides access to resources to help with recovery and prevention of having an incident develop into post-traumatic stress or operational stress injuries.
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Goals of the committee
The Sask First Responders Mental Health Committee has committed to achieving the following multi-year goals:
- Research to share and promote relevant research and best practices to support positive mental health among first responders;
- Develop a network of culturally knowledgeable, competent, credentialed practitioners;
- Develop and pilot an anti-stigma campaign incorporating champions from various first responder groups;
- Develop a toolkit of best practices and resources for employers, supervisors and workers to support mental health in the workplace;
- Identify an evaluation approach for programs and resources made available through this strategy;
- Increase outreach to first responders, their leadership and their communities, to promote awareness of resources and create meaningful change within first responder organizations;
- Host a first responder mental health learning event;
- Reach out to the broader group of public safety personnel to support them in addressing their mental health needs; and
- Support mental health practitioners to improve the effectiveness of the assessment and treatment of first responders.