At Tait Communications, we go beyond for a safer world. We do that by supporting first responders and critical infrastructure industries professionals with the communications tools they require to safely do their jobs and quickly react to incidents and emergencies.
Tait Communications’ customers have stressful jobs. A recent survey by Harbor Research found that continuity and employee wellness are one of the top five applications that first responder organizations are investing in, right after situational awareness and operational and asset tracking. Technology can help relieve some of that stress through the peace of mind of knowing you will be able to communicate during an emergency or any stressful situation. Reliable communications also contributes to efficient and safe work environments, even if those environments involve remote or rugged terrain.
As we head into the holiday season, everyone’s stress levels increase. Tait Communications is especially mindful of our customers’ and dealers’ contributions during this time of year. Mental health should be top of mind over the coming weeks. Just like we maintain our communications equipment, we must maintain our minds and bodies to maximize our abilities to do our jobs. This becomes even more important when our jobs involve keeping communities safe. The good news is that our industry has some helpful resources for emergency communications practitioners to address physical and mental health.
The Association of Public Safety Communications Officials (APCO) International has focused on health and wellness issues for its members who are emergency communications professionals for more than a decade. In fact, the scope of APCO’s Health and Wellness Committee is to research, document, and provide tools for emergency communications center personnel to support, improve, maintain, and care for the physical, mental, and emotional wellbeing of all personnel working in public safety communications. In addition, APCO is holding a 9-1-1 Wellness Summit in February to help 9-1-1 telecommunicators gain insights into stress and trauma management.
Lexipol, a company providing news and resources for first responders, highlights wellness during the last week of March. The company, which began the First Responder Wellness Week in 2023, provided resources around sleep and fatigue, physical activity, mental health, nutrition, and coping strategies.
Responder Assist is an Australian government-funded service that aims to improve the lives of emergency services workers through tailored mental health supports. Australia’s Beyond Blue established the Police and Emergency Services Program in 2014 because of concern for the mental health and suicide risk of current and former police and emergency service workers, volunteers, and their families. Earlier this year, the Australia government announced that the country’s emergency workers will receive mental health support through the establishment of the National Emergency Workers Support Service (NEWSS). The government is providing A$4 million to the Black Dog Institute to establish and deliver the NEWSS, which will be extended to all emergency services workers who respond to national disasters.
The First Responder Wellness Podcast features mental health and wellness conversations with leaders in the community. There are also many other country- and state-specific resources to help first responders with local in-person requirements.
Mental wellness ties into our previous blog topic around staffing as well. Public safety organizations should embrace work-life balance and encourage personnel to take time off whenever possible. Not only does this contribute to better mental health and performance, it helps with staff retention. Younger workers will be most attracted to organizations that prioritize a culture of work-life balance.
As we head into the holiday season, Tait Communications thanks all our customers for their sacrifices. In addition to first responders, utilities professionals are tasked with restoring power after storms or disasters, keeping the lights on and homes heated and cooled. Transportation and other critical industries are responsible for safe and orderly evacuations, reliable transit of goods and people, asset tracking, and many other critical jobs. Utilities and transit agencies work closely with public safety during disasters in mainly less-than-ideal conditions to restore power, transportation, and communications.
We also want to thank our channel partners. They work directly with first responders and critical infrastructure industries professionals, often putting in long hours during the holidays. Our dealers sacrifice time with family and friends to ensure emergency communications professionals receive the communications and other tools they need to stay safe and connected throughout the holidays and year-round. And we cannot forget the families of first responders. It is often hard for emergency communications personnel to separate their professional and home lives, and their families make many sacrifices as well.
Tait Communications is appreciative of the entire ecosystem of people and organizations that go beyond to keep our communities safe. Happy holidays and a special thank you from everyone in the Tait Communications family.
Blog authored by: Sandra Wendelken – Market Insights Manager | Tait Communications
Read the previous Tait Talks topic: The State of the LMR Industry in 2024