Proposed Expansion of PTSD Presumption

Date: December 14, 2017

Branch: 

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After extensive lobbying of the Provincial Government by your OPPA Branch Executives and Board of Directors during the Spring Board Meeting this past May, and subsequent follow up at Queen’s Park from the Board of Directors, legislation has been announced that will extend the post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) presumption contained within the Supporting Ontario’s First Responders Act to include Special Constables, as well as Civilian members of ViCLAS and Forensic Units.

OPPA President Jamieson and Director Sabatini attended this morning’s announcement where Minister of Labour, Kevin Flynn and Minister of Community Safety & Correctional Services, Marie-France Lalonde reaffirmed their commitment to the mental health of our members. We are pleased the Government of Ontario recognizes that many civilian members of law enforcement work side by side with sworn members and are exposed to the same traumatic stressors on a regular basis. If a Special Constable or a Civilian member of a ViCLAS or Forensic Unit is diagnosed with PTSD by a psychiatrist or psychologist, the member’s WSIB claim would be presumed to be work-related. Like our Uniform members and Civilian call takers and dispatchers, the civilians being added into the presumption will receive faster access to compensation and treatment. We expect this legislation to be introduced in the Spring of 2018.

Today’s announcement was a direct result of all levels of your Association, from Detachment Representatives and Branch Executive to the Board of Directors, working together to be champions for the mental health of our members. While this is an important victory, much work remains.

Eliminating the stigma surrounding mental illness in sworn and civilian members of law enforcement will continue as a top priority of the OPPA. Through persistent engagement with our members, Branches, the OPP and the Government of Ontario, we can create a culture where members feel safe to come forward and seek the help they need without fear of reprisal and without judgment from their peers.


Sincerely,

President Rob Jamieson & the Board of Directors
Ontario Provincial Police Association
 
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