Mental health and wellness resources are available to all federal wildland fire personnel right now through the Employee Assistance Program and individual agencies.
No one has to go it alone. Resources are available to help wildland fire personnel with mental health and wellness. Photo by Ave through Adobe Stock.
If you are experiencing thoughts of suicide or are in distress, call or text 988. The Suicide Prevention Lifeline provides 24/7, free, confidential support for people experiencing a crisis or suicidal thoughts. You can call, text, or chat for support. Even if you are not experiencing a crisis, you can contact the service for resources and advice to help you or someone else.
If you or someone else is at immediate risk of harming yourself or another person, call 911.
Information on the health and wellbeing resources available to Interior Department and USDA Forest Service employees can be found on the National Interagency Fire Center talking care of our own webpage.
The Interior Department and USDA Forest Service offer an Employee Assistance Program that gives our personnel access to professional, confidential counseling and consultation that can help employees resolve life challenges. Services are available at no cost to employees or members of their family. The departments have contracted with Espyr to provide assessments, short-term counseling, and referral services for a wide range of personal and work-life issues.
Recognizing the importance of these services for employees like our wildland firefighters, the Employee Assistance Program is now available to seasonal and temporary employees. Additionally, under the new contract, employees who leave active-duty status for reasons such as resignation, furlough, or retirement may continue to receive services for up to six months. Their eligible family members may also continue to receive services during this period.
As we expand mental health support, we will build on the Employee Assistance Program and other existing resources to create comprehensive mental health services for our wildland firefighters.
A live counselor is available to assist you 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.
Each agency provides behavioral health and wellbeing resources and has designated a point of contact.
Casualty Assistance and Critical Incident Stress Management
Casualty Assistance Program webpage
Vacant (formerly Katie Mergel)
Casualty Assistance Program and Critical Incident Stress Management National Coordinator
Mental Health Resources
Wildland Firefighter Mental Health Resources SharePoint (for employees)
Wildland Firefighter Mental Health Coordinator
Bureau of Indian Affairs
Nelda St. Clair
National Critical Incident Stress Management Coordinator
Bureau of Land Management
Dr. Patricia O’Brien
National Mental Health and Wellbeing Program Manager
National Park Service
Wellness & Resilience Portal (for employees)
Dr. Dana Lee
Mental Health and Wellness Coordinator
U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service
Mental Health and Wellness Intranet (for employees)
National Mental Health Specialist