FOP Helps Craft Donnelly-Young Bill to Improve Mental Wellness of Police
Chuck Canterbury, National President of the Fraternal Order of Police, was very pleased with the introduction of the “Law Enforcement Mental Health and Wellness Act,” introduced today by Senators Joseph S. Donnelly, Sr. (D-IN) and Todd C. Young (R-IN).
“Late last Congress, Senator Donnelly reached out to the FOP to get our sense and perspective on the challenges faced by law enforcement officers in terms of mental health and wellness,” Canterbury explained. “We were very happy to work with his staff and that of Senator Young to develop the bill that was introduced today.”
The legislation directs the U.S. Attorney General to identify existing mental health and wellness programs, especially those administered by the U.S. Departments of Defense, Health and Human Services, Homeland Security and Veterans Affairs, and then develop model policies which could be adopted by State, local and tribal law enforcement agencies. It also authorizes the establishment of pilot peer mentoring programs using Federal grants.
“Our officers wear protective clothing and other equipment to keep themselves safe from physical harm, but these officers also face challenges to their mental health and well-being. Unlike many other professions, sometimes you can’t leave the job at the office,” Canterbury said. “The FOP has been a leader in mental wellness for law enforcement officers, and we have found real partners in Senators Donnelly and Young to help us provide better support for the men and women behind the badge. We are proud to support the Law Enforcement Mental Health and Wellness Act and look forward to working with both Senators to get this bill to the President’s desk.”
The Fraternal Order of Police is the largest law enforcement labor organization in the United States with more than 330,000 members in every region of the country.