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Wounded Warriors to offer mental health supports for Peterborough Police Service

Peterborough Police Service staff and front-line officers will benefit with additional mental health supports and services thanks to a new partnership between the Peterborough Police Service and Wounded Warriors Canada.

The new partnership was announced Monday between the service’s Peer Support Team and the organization, which focuses on mental health services for ill and injured veterans and professionals and families. Wounded Warriors Canada currently works with more than 100 police services across Canada.

Some of the programs that will be available to officers and their families include trauma, spousal and couple resiliency programs, “Couples Overcoming PTSD Everyday,” Warrior Kids Camp and virtual program, the “Surviving Family” program, PTSD service dog and an operations stress intervention dog.

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Police chief Stuart Betts some programs will help staff recognize some early indicators of mental health issues.

“We are as vulnerable as any — we are there to protect and we signed up for that,” he said. “But sometimes we need help too.”

Sgt. Jen Bell says the police service had been looked for partnerships with external agencies that would be beneficial to all members of the service and Wounded Warriors Canada was a first priority partnership.

“We recognize that employee wellness is of critical importance to the success of our organization and our commitment to public safety,” Bell said. “We also know that how we offer help is just as important and through this partnership we are pleased to offer different pathways for individuals and their families to access.”

Scott Maxwell, Wounded Warriors Canada executive director, says the partnership is “vital” to help officers and their families with the stresses of policing.

“Given the complexities of operational stress injuries, we know that no single organization can provide the 100 per cent solution when it comes to the mental health and wellness needs of its members and their families,” Maxwell said. “Partnerships are vital. Together, we are working to break down barriers to accessing culturally appropriate mental health care while reducing stigma for those who serve.

“We’re grateful for their willingness to collaborate, and we look forward to working with the Peterborough Police Service in the months and years to come,” he added.

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