Description of original award (Fiscal Year 2023, $110,000)
New Hampshire is made up of 10 counties, 13 cities, 221 towns, 22 unincorporated places and geographically covers 9,304 square miles. The NH law enforcement community is made up of 200 agencies comprised of approximately, 3,050 full-time sworn police officers and 1167 part-time sworn officers. Within these agencies, there is a growing recognition that ensuring personnel’s mental health, is just as essential as good physical health, for the personnel to be effective in keeping our communities safe from crime and violence.
The Manchester Police Department and The Southern New Hampshire Critical Incident Stress Management Team have been striving to provide training and services to NH’s law enforcement personnel and their families, on peer support, CISM, suicide prevention, resilience building, mental health, and wellness support services. The purpose of our BJA FY 23 Invited to Apply - Byrne Discretionary Community Project Funding/Byrne Discretionary Grant Program is to expand upon and bolster ongoing efforts.
Many NH law enforcement agencies lack the size, training, financial ability, and culturally competent community partners to establish comprehensive standalone mental health and wellness programs. There is a growing recognition within our profession that to effectively provide personnel with comprehensive mental health and wellness support services, the city needs to regionalize our peer support and CISM teams.
There are three main goals of this project. The first is to increase the awareness of NH law enforcement agencies to the existence and importance of integrating regionalized peer support, CISM, suicide prevention, resilience building, family oriented, mental health and wellness support services into respective agencies’ routine operations.
The second is to institutionalize regionalized peer support, CISM, suicide prevention, resilience building, family oriented, mental health support services, into the NH law enforcement community, to increase the number of law enforcement agencies practicing and integrating these programs as part of their routine business, and who will continue to engage in these adopted practices for the foreseeable future.
The third goal is to expand, enhance and improve the skills and abilities of existing regionalized peer support, CISM, suicide prevention, resilience building, family oriented, mental health support services around the state.
In order to successfully achieve the project specific goals, the Manchester Police Department will use the $110,000.00 allocated for this project to partner with culturally competent training partners from Yoga for First Responders, The International Critical Incident Stress Foundation, Forge, Veteran & First Responder Healthcare, and UpReach Therapeutic Equestrian Center.