The 2nd Annual Mental Health Strategies for First Responders national conference will provide emergency services with the necessary tools to continue improving their mental health programs, focusing on preventative approaches to build resilience while driving an organisational a wide cultural change.
- Implement a proactive mental health & wellbeing framework
- Increase mental health literacy & awareness
- Support first responders from employment through to retirement
- Equip management with tools to create supportive workplace environments
- Manage complex mental illness & the effects of trauma
Commissioners, CEOs & other senior executives responsible for:
- People & Culture
- Strategic Performance
- Human Resources
- Mental Health
- Health & Wellbeing
- Psychological Services
- Critical Incident Response
- Employee Assistance (EAPs)
Attend to learn:
- Engage leadership to break down stigma & drive cultural change
- Effectively implement preventative mental health strategies
- Use evidence & insights to inform best practice
- CASE STUDY: What’s normal? Mental health culture across volunteer vs paid populations
- Reviewing the national mental health & wellbeing study of police & emergency services
- Anxious vs Angry PTSD: Reviewing alternative evidenced-based treatment strategies
- Anticipating & managing risk over the lifespan of a career in emergency services
Tony Walker is Chief Executive Officer of Ambulance Victoria. He has over 30 years’ experience working in a range of senior clinical governance, education and operational roles and holds an adjunct appointment as Associate Professor in the College of Health and Biomedicine at Victoria University. Tony is a Fellow of Paramedics Australasia, a Fellow of the Australian Institute of Management and Board member of the Emergency Services Foundation, the Council of Ambulance Authorities and the Prostate Cancer Foundation of Australia. He is a recipient of the Ambulance Service Medal (ASM) for his contribution to the development of ambulance services at a state and national level.
Australian Federal Police
Dr Katrina Sanders is the Chief Medical Officer, Australian Federal Police (AFP), with over ten years clinical and leadership experience in operational organisations. She is a Fellow of the Royal Australian College of General Practitioners with a Masters Degree in Public Health specialising in the health of operational forces.
As Chief Medical Officer, Dr Sanders provides strategic health advice and protection to domestic and international operations for the AFP. She is responsible for holistic health services including occupational health, operational health support and psychological services. Extensive occupational experience makes Dr Sanders current, innovative and challenging in her approach to the health needs of operationally focused organisations
Department of Defence
David Morton is the Director General of Mental Health, Psychology and Rehabilitation who works to improve mental health and rehabilitation services to serving ADF members. Since 1989 David has contributed to community health and mental health through clinical service provision, service delivery management and policy development. Some of his achievements are;
- Development of the DVA Mental Health Strategy – Towards Better Mental Health forthe Veteran Community in 2001.
- Development of the DVA national alcohol project – The Right Mix – Your health and Alcohol which continues to be a fundamental program for reducing alcohol related harm in both DVA and defence communities.
- National Manager of the Veterans and Veterans Families Counselling Service (VVCS) between 2005 and 2010. Since 2010 David has provided advocacy and leadership to the ADF Mental Health Reform Program and development of the ADF Mental Health and Wellbeing Strategy 2011-2015 and the most current Defence Mental Health and Wellbeing Strategy 2018-2023.
Much of David’s career has involved working with veterans, their families and defence members. He has a Bachelor of Social Work and has completed post graduate studies in Public Sector Management.
Queensland Fire & Emergency Services
Dr Bernie Scully holds a PhD in psychology with a specialisation in Trauma within Emergency Services organisations. Bernie has held positions as General Manager and National Director of some of the largest and most successful psychology organisations across Australasia.
Bernie has worked with small, large, and iconic organisations to improve approaches to Mental Health and Wellbeing. Bernie was the 2016 keynote speaker for WorkSafe Queensland Annual Statewide conference for the Construction Industry where he spoke to the development of Mentally Healthy Workplaces in the Construction industry.
Bernie has lead large scale Critical Incident psychological response and support services including the Victorian Ash Wednesday fires; 2011 Qld floods; Cyclone Yasi; Christchurch Earthquakes and many more. Bernie’s role within Queensland Fire and Emergency Services involves the management of Clinical Psychology and Organisational Development services, which relates to the proactive, preventative and reactive support of mental health within QFES’ Corporate, Fire and Rescue, Rural Fire and SES members.
Gallagher Bassett is Australia’s largest multi-disciplinary Third Party Claims Administrator. Not only do we expertly manage our clients’ claims, we guide them through complex regulatory frameworks, guard their reputation, and go beyond their expectations. GB provides customised claim and risk mitigation solutions that improve our clients’ outcomes.
GB provides return to work services to some of Australia’s largest emergency services organisations, including Victoria Police and the Metropolitan Fire Brigade. We understand the significant level of stress first responders encounter daily, and the need to engage them to reduce the risk of mental illness.
Mental injury claims are one of the fastest growing and most expensive types of workplace injury, both in Victoria and Australia-wide. To prevent and address the danger of mental injuries for first responders, GB has commenced a pilot program for a new Mental Injury Intervention Project for large employers.
GB and emergency service providers have undertaken a number of strategies to improve claims management, customer service and RTW performance for first responders. We conduct a networking forum for a number of Victoria’s emergency services, providing a platform for these organisations to discuss challenges and risks associated with workplace injuries and incidents.
We believe that the chief strategy for preventing mental injuries for first responders centres on building resilience and increasing awareness. To achieve this goal, we provide tailored training solutions to emergency services, as well as GP forums to discuss mental injury, certification and the claims process.
Additionally, GB donates trauma teddies to emergency service providers through the GB Gentle Bear program. GB proposed the idea of sponsoring teddy bears that could be carried in police and other emergency vehicles and handed out to young children involved in events such as serious road traffic accidents and domestic violence. Over the past 10 years, GB has donated over 10,000 Gentle Bears to a range of organisations, including NT Police, Fire and Emergency Services, Victoria Police, NSW Police, SA Police and New Zealand Police.
What People Are Saying
“An extremely informative journey through mental health strategy in relation to first responder agencies. Knowledgeable presenters and excellent networking opportunities with like-minded representatives from other agencies.”Inspector Police Support, Department of Police, Fire & Emergency Management Tasmania & Attendee, Mental Health Strategies for First Responders conference, March 2017
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