May 27, 2021
May is Mental Health Awareness Month. The U.S. Department of Justice has many programs and resources dedicated to officer safety and wellness, including addressing mental health and preventing suicide. These are a few of them:
- The Bureau of Justice Assistance (BJA) supports the Officer Robert Wilson III Preventing Violence Against Law Enforcement Officers and Ensuring Officer Resilience and Survivability (VALOR) Initiative. VALOR offers no-cost training, conducts research, provides resources, and establishes partnerships to benefit law enforcement officers. Their programs and resources address the following topics: comprehensive officer safety and wellness, law enforcement resilience, law enforcement suicide prevention, roadway safety for law enforcement, officer safety and wellness research, and strengthening partnerships.
- BJA offers various additional resources and programs related to law enforcement officer safety and wellness. These resources focus on mitigating the impact of stress on officers and their families, preventing suicide among law enforcement officers, increasing officer safety by defusing difficult situations, and promoting public confidence in policing and, in doing so, honoring those who serve.
- BJA supports the National Consortium on Preventing Law Enforcement Suicide (Consortium). The International Association of Chiefs of Police, in partnership with the Education Development Center and with support from the National Action Alliance for Suicide Prevention, convened the Consortium in 2019. From that Consortium, various subject matter experts developed the National Consortium on Preventing Law Enforcement Suicide Toolkit, which provides various resources for agencies in preventing and addressing law enforcement suicide.
- The Office of Community Oriented Policing Services convenes a National Officer Safety and Wellness Group that brings together subject matter experts to address important factors that contribute to officer safety and wellness.