18 May Firefighters encourage safety officers to participate in Mental Health Week
This week, starting the fifteenth of may, is Mental Health Awareness week, individuals from across fire and safety societies have urged firefighters and members of safety teams across the world to be aware of anxiety and mental difficulties that can come with stressful occupations such as firefighting.
The theme for this years Mental Health Awareness week is that of Anxiety. An extremely common condition defined as ‘a feeling of unease, that can be mild or severe’.
Assistant Chief Fire Officer, Craig Flannery said: “Dealing with anxiety can be hard to face alone, as a Service we aim to tackle the stigma around talking about our mental health and encourage our employees to speak up, so we can provide as much help and support as possible. Connecting people and asking them to get involved in gentle exercise is just one way we aim to achieve this.”
Alexa Charnley, Director of Fundraising and Communications at the Mental Health Foundation, said: “We all experience anxiety but sometimes it can get out of control and become a mental health problem.”
Responding to a survey by UCLAN, it was found that Firefighters were 20% more likely to have a mental health condition than the average member of the public, with firefighters being three times more likely to have depression.