As Members are aware, the nature of our industry is one that generates inherent stress and anxiety which may result in depression or other illness.
It is often not spoken about but it is common for firefighters to experience these types of mental health trauma as a result of their service to the community.
Therefore it is vitally important that each and every one of us recognise that we are susceptible to experiencing any one of the above as a result of the nature of our industry.
Both the MFB and the CFA have support services which members are encouraged to access. The contact details are as follows:
- The UFU Welfare Officer, Ross Fusca, can be contacted on 0477 884 456.
- For MFB personnel there is 24 hour access to a dedicated counselling service with psychologists by calling 1800 451 138 or 1300 366 789. If you call this service you can have immediate access to a psychologist via telephone or alternatively make an appointment. This service is also available for family members.
- Additionally for MFB personnel there is an extensive peer support programme where a clinician can be accessed by calling 9665 4405 or 0407 665 174, or the Peer Coordinator on 0417 538 289 or 9665 4516.
- CFA members can access Critical Incident Stress Peer Support by calling either the CFA Chaplain Service on 1800 337 068 or CFA Member Assistance Program – a 24 hour confidential and external counselling service on 1300 795 711.
We encourage you to use the above services provided by the MFB and CFA. However, if you feel uncomfortable in doing so there are external support services which all can access.
The beyondblue website has comprehensive information that deals with a range of mental health awareness and the support and help that is available. It also lists the following support services that are external to the CFA and MFB and are available to all:
If you require any further information please do not hesitate to contact the UFU or Peter Marshall on 0419 127 004.