Beyond Blue has released their ground-breaking research into the mental health and well-being of police and emergency service personnel, which has included input from 33 agencies in every state and territory.
More than 21,000 police, fire, ambulance and SES employees, volunteers and retired and former personnel took part in the 25-minute ‘Answering the call’ survey.
The survey found:
- One in three police and emergency services employees experience high or very high psychological distress compared to one in eight Australian adults;
- Over one in 2.5 employees and one in three volunteers report being diagnosed with a mental health condition in their life compared to one in five Australian adults;
- Employees and volunteers report suicidal thoughts over two times more often than adults in the general population and are three times more likely to have a suicide plan;
- Over half employees surveyed experienced a traumatic event during the course of their work that deeply affected them;
- Poor workplace practices and culture are equally debilitating as exposure to trauma;
- Employees who have worked more than ten years in police and emergency services are almost twice as likely to experience psychological distress and six times more likely to have symptoms of PTSD compared to those with less than two years’ service;
- Three in four employees who had made a claim for psychological injury found the current workers’ compensation process to be detrimental to their recovery.
The PFA welcome the report and thank the many members that took part in this important survey.