Mental health charity Mind has opened a confidential help and support service for emergency services staff, volunteers; and their friends and family.
The Blue Light Infoline forms part of a year-long programme being delivered by Mind to support personnel across police, ambulance, fire and search and rescue teams in England. Staff and volunteers in the emergency or 'blue light' services have been identified as being at greater risk of developing mental health problems than the general population.
Emma Mamo, Head of Workplace Wellbeing at Mind, said:
"We know from our own research with emergency services personnel just how tough these jobs can be, and that's why it's so important that tailored support is available. Those on the front line have to deal with traumatic events on a daily basis, so it's no wonder that anxiety, stress and mental health problems are commonplace. It can be difficult for friends and family too, who often play a vital role supporting our Blue Light staff and volunteers.
"It's sometimes hard to know where to turn for help. That's why we're pleased to launch our Blue Light Infoline, offering bespoke information and support for emergency service staff, volunteers and their families."
The Infoline number is 0300 303 5999 and calls are charged at the local rate. Infoline advisers can also be contacted by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org or by sending a text message to 84999.
The team of dedicated advisers can provide information on a range of topics including staying mentally healthy at work, types of mental health problem, how and where to get help, medication and alternative treatments, advocacy, post traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), existing emergency service support and mental health and the law.