What is a hero?
In more modern times, a hero is someone who, in the face of danger and adversity or from a position of weakness, displays courage and the will to persevere.
To us, heroes are the men and women who wake up every day and serve communities across the nation. Dealing with crisis, patrolling dangerous streets, helping those in need, and the list continues with what law enforcement officers handle across the span of their career.
But what if our heroes need help too?
They may be strong, but they are not invulnerable. They may be brave, but they too are susceptible to mental health issues.
According to a Walden University study, police officers report higher rates of depression, anxiety, and post-trauma stress disorder (PTSD.) More officers die by suicide than in the line of duty.
3 Tools to Support your Officers:
- Hold informal debriefing meetings
- Offer physical and mental health resources
“Enabling internal resources and programs like peer support programs, chaplains, and professional counselors is the key to being proactive when it comes to supporting mental health among officers. Meaningful people data informs and shapes what those resources can look like,” Scott Monroe, CEO & Founder of Essential Personnel.
A long-lasting career in law enforcement starts with taking care of yourself.
“Officers need to know they are not alone in this. They see the best and worst situations. Those who wear the badge should be able to go to their commanding officer without the fear of being sidelined or reprimanded. Beyond that, they need to be equipped with tools and resources to be proactive in taking care of themselves mentally,” Retired Sergeant, Broward Sheriff’s Office & Law Enforcement Life Coach, John Kelly.
While May is Mental Health Awareness Month, proactively addressing the well-being of officers 24/7, 365 days a year is key.
Law Enforcement Life Coach Information
National Alliance on Mental Illness
NAMI Helpline at 800-950-NAMI or in a crisis, text “NAMI” to 741741
Law Enforcement Mental Health Support Center
National Suicide Prevention Lifeline , 1-800-273-8255