Ontario is putting in place a number of new initiatives to help prevent or mitigate the risk of post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) among first responders, such as police personnel, firefighters and paramedics.

The province’s prevention strategy includes a free online toolkit with resources on PTSD that is tailored to meet the needs of employers in each of the first-responder sectors.

It will also include an annual leadership summit to be hosted by the Minister of Labour to highlight best practices, recognize leaders, and monitor progress in dealing with PTSD.

Read: Dealing with PTSD in the workplace

Evidence shows that first responders such as police personnel, firefighters and paramedics are at least twice as likely as the general population to suffer from PTSD, due to the risk of routine exposure to traumatic stressors.

Ensuring employers have the resources they need to improve mental health supports is part of the government’s plan to build Ontario up, according to a news release.

“With appropriate resources and timely treatment, we know [PTSD] can be prevented or mitigated,” said Kevin Flynn, Ontario’s Minister of Labour.

“We’re acting to ensure we support effective prevention for Ontario’s first responders. We know the solution lies within a comprehensive approach which includes both preventative and legislative measures.”

Read: 5 key stats about Canadians’ mental health

Copyright © 2020 Transcontinental Media G.P. Originally published on benefitscanada.com

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