The terrible events that took place during the Sandy Hook Elementary School shootings on December 14, 2012, prompted the U.S. Justice Department to release a report. This report prompts police departments to enact mental health programs for police officers.

After the massacre at Sandy Hook Elementary School, Newtown Police Chief, Michael Kehoe, was concerned that some responding members of his police force may commit suicide. It has been documented that suicide rates for police officers are already higher than those of the general public. Kehoe believes that many chiefs are unaware of the impact that mass casualty events will have on their communities and officers. Recognizing the need to help officers cope with the trauma they face on the job, he worked with the U.S. Justice Department and other officials to conduct research and prepare a 140-page report.

Although police departments typically train their officers on mass shooting response, the truth still remains that many are not trained to cope with the psychological impacts of such an event. There is a real need to ensure that police officers have appropriate access to mental health care. The report (linked to below) outlines many reasons why.

To read more about this report, read this article written by the AP.

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