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Law Enforcement Assistance Program

Law enforcement personnel are frequently exposed to dangerous work environments, risks of civil liability, public scrutiny, and repeated exposure to traumatic events. Families of law enforcement personnel must cope with the absences that result from shift work schedules as well as the threat of potential harm to, or loss of, their loved one. Federal Occupational Health (FOH) recognizes that the unique occupational stressors that law enforcement personnel and their families are frequently exposed to require specialized services. FOH’s Law Enforcement Assistance Program is designed to meet the particular needs of this group of professionals.

Law enforcement officers are often reluctant to seek professional support for a variety of reasons. Often, the traits that help officers perform their jobs effectively can also prevent them from acknowledging a need for help. Officers, who have been trained to act independently and maintain constant emotional control, may view the need for support services as a sign of personal weakness. Furthermore, officers may normalize the negative effects of prolonged stress and simply accept it as “part of the job”. Even if they recognize that they would benefit from it, they may avoid the Employee Assistance Program if they feel that the counselors are “civilians”, who will not understand the nature of their work. The Law Enforcement Assistance Program is especially aware of this issue, and is staffed with professionals who have experience working with law enforcement officers.

FOH’s Law Enforcement Assistance Program offers:

  • A Panel of Law Enforcement Counselors
    By dialing a toll-free, 24-hour, seven days a week telephone number and requesting entry into the law enforcement network, law enforcement personnel and their families have access to FOH’s nationwide panel of counselors. FOH Law Enforcement Assistance Program counselors have experience working with law enforcement personnel and their families, and understand the unique occupational stressors encountered by these professionals.
  • Confidentiality
    Professional ethics and state laws protect the communication between an officer and a Law Enforcement Assistance Program counselor. Various state and Federal regulations protect these communications and, except for rare instances such as intent to commit harm to self or others, contacts with counselors are held in strict confidence.
  • Law Enforcement Management Consultations
    When officers or employees are having difficulties, their job performance or behavior can be impacted. For example, there may be an increase in citizen complaints, minor traffic incidents, excessive force complaints, or increased absenteeism. FOH counselors assist managers by identifying problematic behavior and supporting the manager in making crucial decisions about an officer or employee, such as a decision to make a written referral to the Law Enforcement Assistance Program as a possible alternative to disciplinary action. Managers can be assured that they have offered support and resources to the officer, allowing managers to remain focused on performance issues.
  • Critical Incident Stress Management (CISM)
    FOH has a network of professionally trained counselors with experience in providing CISM services to law enforcement personnel who have been involved in a critical incident. Counselors provide management consultations, defusings and/or debriefings in the aftermath of a critical incident.
  • Training
    FOH can provide training oriented toward law enforcement. Examples of such trainings include Officer Suicide Prevention, Stress Management for Law Enforcement Officers and Critical Incident Management for Supervisors.
Law Enforcement EAP Frequently Asked Questions

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