Essex Police signs pledge to tackle mental health stigma

Chief Constable Stephen Kavanagh, Police and Crime Commissioner Nick Alston, and Director of Essex a

Chief Constable Stephen Kavanagh, Police and Crime Commissioner Nick Alston, and Director of Essex and Kent Support Services Mark Gilmartin sign mental health pledge - Credit: Gary Kenton

Essex Police has signed up to mental health charity Mind’s Blue Light Time to Change Pledge, committing the force to challenging stigma and looking after officers, staff and the public.

The pledge aims to raise awareness among emergency service staff about mental health, both for themselves and in the work they do.

Chief Constable Stephen Kavanagh, Police and Crime Commissioner Nick Alston, and staff from the force signed the pledge today.

Mr Kavanagh said: “People who work in the emergency services are ordinary people asked every day to do extraordinary jobs. We wouldn’t be human if that didn’t test us mentally as well as physically but while we will always experience trauma and stress on the job, what we can change is how we support each other in dealing with and recovering from it.

“I’m proud Essex Police has signed the pledge, but what’s more important is when we put mental health and wellbeing at the heart of what we do, we become a healthier force better able not only to keep Essex safe but to protect vulnerable people here.”


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Mr Alston added: “Our police officers, staff and volunteers do a tough job and deal with very difficult and challenging events every single day.

“It’s important we recognise those challenges and create an environment where people feel able to speak freely about them and get all the support they need.

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“Raising awareness of mental health within the workplace will also equip police officers and staff with the skills and understanding they need in dealing with those members of the public they may encounter in distress.”

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