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Mental health support for firefighters

Published Friday, December 14, 2018

A Westminster Hall debate on Mental health support for firefighters is scheduled for Tuesday 18 December 2018 at 2.30pm. The Member leading the debate is Emma Dent Coad MP.

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Firefighters have a stressful and at times traumatic job. Research from the mental health charity ‘Mind’ has found that 85% of people in the fire and rescue services have experienced stress and poor mental health at work.

Individual fire service authorities are responsible for ensuring that they have appropriate health and wellbeing support for their staff. The Fire brigade Union (FBU) have advocated for all fire authorities to have specific mental health policies.

Support is available to firefighters from various charities and professional bodies including the Firefighters charity and Mind.

NHS England announced on 9 October 2018 that up to £50 million will be made available over five years to provide ongoing physical and mental health services for those affected by the Grenfell fire, including long-term screening.

The Government has used some of the levied LIBOR fines to provide grants to charities providing mental health advocacy and support for emergency workers. The largest recipient of LIBOR grants relating to mental health support for emergency service personnel was the mental health charity ‘Mind’. ‘Mind’ used the funding to establish the Blue Light Programme. The programme provides a variety of services to emergency service workers and has conducted research about their mental health.

Her Majesty’s Inspectorate of Constabulary and Fire and Rescue Services has committed to assessing how the fire authorities meet the wellbeing needs of their staff as part ‘inspection question set’ for 2018-19.

Commons Debate packs CDP-2018-0277

Authors: Jennifer Brown; Tom Powell; Sarah Pepin

Topics: Fire services, Mental health

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