OHS Canada Magazine

Alberta offer $1.5 million in grants to support first responders’ mental health


April 18, 2022
By OHS Canada

Health & Safety

(Mark Poprocki/Adobe Stock)

Alberta is offering grants to help support the mental health of first responders.

Non-profit service providers and Canadian-based researchers can apply for funding through the Supporting Psychological Health in First Responders program. Up to $1.5 million is available for the program in 2022-23. Funding amounts can vary, depending on the scope of services or research projects. The application deadline is June 13.

“First responders and emergency health-care workers are at greater risk for work-related mental health issues,” said Kaycee Madu, Minister of Labour and Immigration. “These heroes put their mental and physical health on the line every day to keep Albertans safe and it’s vital to have their backs.”=

The grants support services such as peer support and resilience training for first responders and emergency health-care workers living with or at risk of developing post-traumatic stress injuries. The grants also support applied research to develop and evaluate the most effective treatment programs and services.

Non-profit organizations that provide services to first responders or emergency health-care workers living with or at risk for post-traumatic stress injuries are eligible to apply for grants. Canadian-based individuals or organizations that conduct applied research are also eligible to apply.

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Quick facts

Alberta’s government committed up to $1.5 million per year for the grant program, starting in 2020-21.

From 2015 to 2019, there were 685 Workers’ Compensation Board claims costing $104 million for first responders related to post-traumatic stress injuries.

Alberta’s first responders include:

  • more than 14,000 full-time, part-time, casual and volunteer firefighters, about 80 per cent of which are volunteers
  • more than 7,500 police officers
  • more than 9,400 paramedics
  • more than 770 sheriffs
  • more than 1,500 corrections officers

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