|Posted:||June 12, 2018 12:25 PM|
|From:||Representative Michael H. Schlossberg and Rep. Frank A. Farry|
|To:||All House members|
|Subject:||Emergency Responder Mental Wellness and Stress Management Program|
|In the near future, we will introduce bi-partisan legislation that creates a Mental Wellness and Stress Management program for Pennsylvania’s first responders.
Our legislation establishes a mental wellness and stress management protocol within the PA Department of Health (DOH) to protect emergency responders living with post-traumatic stress and/or brain injuries and creates a toolbox for emergency responders to utilize when dealing with post-traumatic stress injuries, these tools include:
Rushing to the scene without second thought, emergency responders often witness horrors that most of us cannot even begin to imagine. In fact, recent studies have shown that they experience higher rates of depression, alcohol abuse, sleep disturbances, anxiety disorders and suicidal thoughts. Unfortunately, those who are first to respond are often the last to seek help.
It is critical for first responders to understand that asking for help is a strength, not a weakness. The creation of this program will provide Pennsylvania’s emergency responders with the opportunity to lessen the psychological impact of their jobs. That is why we, as legislators, must do all we can to support our first responders, especially those who may be suffering in silence.
Please join me in cosponsoring this very important legislation.
Introduced as HB2508