South Carolina Legislators Aiming To Focus On First Responders’ Mental Health

South Carolina Legislators Aiming To Focus On First Responders’ Mental Health

“We put on our gear to protect us. You can only protect from the heat and the fire, and physical harm, but the mental things, they enter into you.. There is no protections against that,” Fire Captain at Piedmont Park Fire Department, Duane Brock, says. Brock says, he’s seen it all, “I had a really bad call where four children died.”

Adding, the emotion of the job can take a toll. People like Brock, who put their life and mental stability on the line every day are why a bill was introduced in the state house to change that.

Public affairs for Professional Fire Fighters Association, Benjamin Baker explains, “Currently workers compensation law excludes firefighters, police, ems, that type of worker from receiving worker’s comp for a mental injury.” “We would be able to apply for worker’s comp to provide for us if we’re out of work trying to recover from a mental injury,” Baker said.

However, lawmakers in South Carolina are stepping in to help. “Over time I felt like yeah, maybe I do have some sort of issue because I felt like I was waking up in the middle of the night, and not having a nightmare, but every night I was waking up at the same time, it was pretty much every night,” Brock said.

Brock says it passed, it’ll be a game changer. The bill has passed through the House of Representatives and is now waiting to be passed by the Senate before the governor can sign it into law.

To learn more about the bill, click here. Source “It’s a step forward, because there’s so many things we haven’t accessed yet, that we’re just starting,” Brock said.

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