MPP Bailey Questions Liberal Government on Lack of Funds for First Responder PTSD Program
QUEEN’S PARK – On Thursday, Sarnia-Lambton MPP Bob Bailey questioned the Liberal government about the lack of funding for the Workplace Traumatic Stress Program at London’s Health Sciences Centre which helps area first responders dealing with symptoms of post-traumatic stress disorder.
The program, the only one of its kind west of Toronto, is scheduled to be cancelled December 2nd by London Health Sciences Centre because of an annual operating shortfall of $500,000. Local first responders accessing the services of the program have called the news of closure devastating.
“London Health Sciences Centre says there is no support from your government to keep the program running,” said MPP Bailey during question period. “The Workplace Traumatic Stress Program closes for good in eight weeks, will your government be stepping in to support this important program before the December 2nd deadline?”
In April 2016, the Ontario Legislature passed the Supporting Ontario’s First Responders Act with the intent of providing faster access to WSIB benefits, resources and timely treatment for any of Ontario’s 73,000 first responders dealing with symptoms of PTSD. Without the clinicians and services offered through the Workplace Traumatic Stress Program, local first responders seeking help will have more difficulty receiving a PTSD diagnosis, and face much longer wait times for important services.
Video of MPP Bailey’s question:
CTV News London story on the closing of Workplace Traumatic Stress Program: