Monday, April 22, 2019

First Responders workshops for the stress of coping with danger

Workshops help first responders deal with stress

The Republic
By Mark Webber

Two upcoming workshops for local first responders will help them deal with the stress of coping with danger, chaos and tragedy which are part of their professions.
Mike Kutsko

Rates of post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and depression among police and firefighters have been found to be as much as five times higher than the civilian population, said Columbus Deputy Fire Chief Mike Kutsko.

Workshops on Monday and Tuesday at Columbus City Hall are designed to help the first responders, and also their families, Kutsko said.

Until recently, most first-responders would never admit they have a problem. Good mental health is a prerequisite to working in police or fire operations, so there is fear of losing promotions – or worse – if someone admits feeling depressed or traumatized, Kutsko said.

"There is a big stigma with mental health," Kutsko said. "There’s a fear that others will look on you as if you are weak."
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