Stamas’ Critical Incident Stress Management team support bill signed into law

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LANSING, Mich. — Sen. Jim Stamas, Roxanne Affholter of Michigan Crisis Response Association and Midland Fire Department Chief Chris Coughlin joined Gov. Rick Snyder at the Capitol on Tuesday for a signing ceremony of Stamas’ legislation to support the state’s Critical Incident Stress Management (CISM) teams.

“Our emergency service providers — like our police, firefighters and EMS workers — work in high-stress professions and many times need assistance dealing with that stress,” said Stamas, R-Midland. “That is where Michigan’s CISM teams come in. They help our public safety workers deal with critical stress, such as a traumatic event or loss of a co-worker. This new law is part of an effort to encourage more of our first responders to use these tremendously helpful services.”

Senate Bill 444, now Public Act 40 of 2016, defines Critical Incident Stress Management and its key components and outlines confidentiality provisions. Critical Incident Stress is defined as the actual or perceived event or situation that involves crisis, disaster, trauma or emergency.

There are approximately 56 CISM teams throughout Michigan registered with Michigan Crisis Response Association (MCRA). MCRA provides training and support that follows the International Critical Incident Stress Foundation model.

CISM teams respond to critical incidents, such as a natural disaster, assault, suicide or a death of a child or co-worker.

The new law was supported by the Fire Chiefs Association of Michigan, Michigan Association of Ambulance Services and Michigan Crisis Response Association.

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Editor’s note: The above photograph is available by clicking on the image or by visiting Stamas’ online photo gallery at: www.SenatorJimStamas.com/photowire.