Mental health issues are still infrequently discussed in the first responder community. The paramedic profession has a high rate of suicide and mental health-related issues. However, people are slowly opening up about their own personal struggles with their peers and mental health professionals. It’s very important that first responders know that they have options. The peer support programs from FrontlineCT are a great opportunity for those who are struggling and need some help. We’ll be speaking with Steven Wilcox Director of Education for FrontlineCT about their first responder peer support program and the stigma around first responder mental health.
Steve Wilcox has been a Paramedic over 20 years, having worked for 5 years in corrections and he was also a member of the Connecticut national guard for 6 years. Steve has a BA in Psychology from West Conn and is currently in the MSW program at Widener University.
We talk about:
What led Steve to pursue a career as a paramedic, and how has that profession changed (for better or worse) over his career?
Steve’s first EAP experience and how that played out.
What Steve’s connection has been with mental health professionals and how they influenced his career.
How did FrontlineCT start? What is its mission?
How do you attack the stigma around first responders mental health?
During your research on first responder mental health, what have you found in terms of PTSD, suicide and mental health issues in the first responder community?
What is the goal of FrontlineTC, and what services and resources do they offer to FRs?
What kind of events does Frontline CT host?