A report released today says destigmatizing mental health issues and ensuring quick access to quality care are critical to helping stop police officers from killing themselves.
Ontario's Chief Coroner Dirk Huyer struck a panel of experts after what was believed to be an unprecedented nine officers killed themselves in the province last year.
Their report says removing the stigma from mental health in policing is an urgent priority because officers interacting with people facing mental health crises can become jaundiced about the mentally ill -- which leads them to deny their own problems and avoid seeking help.
It says efforts to normalize mental health challenges should begin before recruitment, extend through all phases of officers' careers, and must include their families.
This report by The Canadian Press was first published Oct. 2, 2019.
If you or someone you know is in crisis, here are some resources that are available.
Crisis Services Canada (1-833-456-4566 or text 45645), Centre for Suicide Prevention (1-833-456-4566) or Kids Help Phone (1-800-668-6868) offer ways of getting help if you, or someone you know, may be suffering from mental health issues.
If you need immediate assistance call 911 or go to the nearest hospital.