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Developing a Peer Support Program
What is a Peer Support program?
Peer Support is a program consisting of co-workers who are trained to identify various symptoms, challenges, and aid their fellow co-workers by providing support.
Through listening, understanding, and providing appropriate referrals, Peer Support programs serve proactively as an early-warning detection system to help individuals handle their personal problems.
Peer Support helps decrease the day-to-day stress of Public Safety professions. It can also counter-check the emotional strain of critical incidents, as well as prevent the accumulation of frustration, anger, and helplessness, which could lead to alcohol abuse, substance abuse, depression, domestic violence, and suicide.
How do I get a program started?
TCTI recommends introducing the Peer Support program to your department through a half-day training course on Developing a Peer Support Program. This course will lay the foundation of Peer Support for your department, and would provide assistance with:
- Understanding the purpose and importance of having a Peer Support program
- Creating selection criteria to nominate individuals as potential Peer Supporters
- Suggest personal characteristics of effective Peer Supporters to aid in your selection process
- Provide you with the responsibilities of Peer Supporter’s based on your departmental needs
What kind of training is involved?
The three-day Basic Peer Support Training course will cover the following curriculum:
- Developing a peer support program
- Basic peer support skills
- Grief and bereavement
- Dealing with critical incident stress in emergency services
- Dealing with suicide situations in emergency services
- Dealing with depression
- Substance abuse
- Marriage and family relationships
- The impact of a line of duty death
This course is certified under POST and STC – continuing education credits are also available.
This is the same successful training program used to train over 15,000 Peer Supporters working in Public Safety professions, ER Nurses, FBI, ATF, and U.S. Marshals, taught by TCTI.