Investigating the Mental Health and Well-being of Communicators, the Barriers to Seeking Help, and the Advantages of Peer Support
Date & Time
Tuesday, November 21, 2023, 2:15 PM - 3:15 PM

Presenters: Emily Howe, Stephen Czarnuch, & Nadine Leduc

This session focuses on research looking at the prevalence of disorders in Canadian communicators, including post-traumatic stress disorder, major depressive disorder, general anxiety disorder, panic disorder, and alcohol use. Barriers to help-seeking behaviors will be identified, including obstacles to access, consequences associated with seeking help, and the influence of stigma and culture. The presenters will conclude by highlighting PeerOnCall, a free peer support platform designed specifically for public safety communicators and other public safety personnel.

Nadine will present her research findings, which identify the characteristics of supportive and negative organizational cultures in emergency services. Despite significant variations in leadership behaviours across agencies, there is a clear consensus that communicators feel undervalued in their organizations. Nadine will illustrate how negative cultures can have a detrimental effect on staff, operations, and public health.