The Mental Health Subcommittee (MHSC) provides national leadership in wildland firefighter mental health and wellness. The MHSC promotes and facilitates a national interagency approach to proactively identifying and addressing firefighter mental health.
- Develop NWCG guidance that enables firefighters and fire managers to recognize hazards to mental health and wellness and take effective prevention and mitigation actions.
- Standardize processes for collecting and analyzing data on wildland firefighter mental health and wellness.
- Use this data to inform development of NWCG wildland firefighter mental health and wellness guidance.
- Provide a forum for all firefighters and managers to increase their knowledge of wildland firefighter mental health issues and contribute to improvements in this area.
- NWCG Critical Incident Stress Management (CISM) Desk Reference
- RT-130, WFSTAR: Wildland Fire Mental Health
- Winter and Holiday Newsletter: 2021-2022
- Fall 2021 Newsletter: Reentry
- COVID-19: Psychological Transition and Balance - YouTube video
National Suicide Prevention Week
September 10-16, 2023
As members of the wildland fire community, we can each take steps to support the wellbeing of fellow wildland firefighters and wildland fire support personnel. Together, we can prevent suicide by increasing awareness, decreasing stigma, and taking steps to care for ourselves and others.
In recognition of National Suicide Prevention Week, the NWCG Mental Health Subcommittee has created seven days of messaging to support wildland firefighter health and wellbeing.
We challenge you to use these materials to start a conversation about maintaining mental health and wellness with coworkers and to learn new ways of caring for yourself and others throughout the year. Each short piece takes only a few minutes to read but could provide information that makes a difference for you or someone else.
- Summer 2021 Newsletter: Resilience
- Spring 2021 Newsletter: Season Preparation
- January 2021 Newsletter: Burnout
- Winter and Holiday Newsletter 2020-21
- Winter and Holiday Newsletter 2019-2020
- Filling the Void
- Suicide Prevention 2020: Come Together for Suicide Prevention
- Stigma and Mental Illness
- Maintaining Social Connections
- Suicide in Wildland Fire: Culture, Sense of Belonging, Identity, and Purpose
- Maintaining Mental Fitness
- Stress and Suicide
- Support Systems for Suicide Prevention
- Coping During Times of Uncertainty
- COVID-19 and Managing Your Mental Health
- Fear, Isolation, Depression: The Mental Health Fallout of a Worldwide Pandemic
- Coping With Stress
- Mental Health And COVID-19 – Information And Resources
- Protecting your mental health during the coronavirus pandemic
- COVID-19 resources for fire and EMS (FEMA)
Stress First Aid (SFA) Training
Items to Review
- Wildfires - Learn About Who Is Most At Risk For Emotional Distress From Wildfires And Where To Find Disaster-related Resources
- Need to Talk to Someone? (Warmlines)
- How to Recognize and Overcome Trauma
- 25 Simple and Proven Ways to De-Stress
- A Manager's Guide to Suicide Postvention in the Workplace: 10 Action Steps for Dealing with the Aftermath of a Suicide
- Montreal police suicide prevention program.
- Study of suicidal thoughts and behavior among firefighters by Florida State University.
- Employee Support Resources
- DOI EAP
- NPS Wellness & Resilience Portal
- FWS CISM and Peer Support Program
- FWS Employee Well Being (DOI accessible only)
U.S. Forest Service EAP Providers as of April 1,2022
- Regions 1 and 3: Espyr (Same Vendor as Agencywide Contract), Access Code: FSRegion1
- Region 4: ComPsych (888) 290-4327
- Region 6 and PNW Research Station: Deer Oaks EAP Services (888) 993-7650, https://www.deeroaks.com/, Access Code: EAPR6
- All Other Units: Federal Occupational Health (800) 222-0364
- NVFC Releases Behavioral Healthcare Provider Directory for Emergency Responders
- National Wildland Fire and Aviation: Critical Incident Stress Management
- Be the One To Save a Life - #BeThe1To
- Forest Service Suicide Awareness Tool Box