On Thursday, the province announced up to $1.5 million is available in 2022-23 for non-profit service providers and Canadian-based researchers to apply for the Supporting Psychological Health in First Responders program. (Photo by Government of Alberta)

On Thursday, the province announced up to $1.5 million is available in 2022-23 for non-profit service providers and Canadian-based researchers to apply for the Supporting Psychological Health in First Responders program. (Photo by Government of Alberta)

AB Gov’t supports First Responders’ mental health with new grants

The provincial government is making new funds available to assist first responders and emergency health-care workers that are dealing with post-traumatic stress.

On Thursday, the province announced up to $1.5 million is available in 2022-23 for non-profit service providers and Canadian-based researchers to apply for the Supporting Psychological Health in First Responders program.

“First responders and emergency health-care workers are at greater risk for work-related mental health issues, which is why Alberta’s government committed to providing extra supports,” said Kaycee Madu, Minister of Labour and Immigration.

“These heroes put their mental and physical health on the line every day to keep Albertans safe and it’s vital to have their backs.”

The grants support services such as peer support and resilience training for first responders and emergency health-care workers living with or at risk of developing post-traumatic stress injuries. The grants also support applied research to develop and evaluate the most effective treatment programs and services.

Non-profit organizations that provide services to first responders or emergency health-care workers living with or at risk for post-traumatic stress injuries are eligible to apply for grants. Canadian-based individuals or organizations that conduct applied research are also eligible to apply.

According to a government release, from 2015 to 2019, there were 685 Worker’s Compensation Board claims costing $104 million for first responders related to post-traumatic stress.