Charlotte Fire joins U.S. Veterans Hall of Fame to Prevent Suicide
Kevin Campbell
Suicide Prevention

With the constant alarm sounding at a firehouse, firefighters often don't have time to process one grim experience before they face the next one.

"Our peer support team have all gone through something very difficult and each one of them has a diverse experience that they can share, and some have suffered things that are unspeakable," Starnes said. "But each one of them has the courage to go in and listen and say, 'I know how you feel' and mean it."

Therapy can be an effective tool to restore or maintain mental health. Discussing difficult experiences and emotions with a trained therapist may be difficult, but not processing them can cause those experiences and emotions to linger longer.

In addition to the peer-to-peer support team, Charlotte Fire staff members have a multitude of behavioral health resources available to them. From the employee assistance program, which provides confidential and free services, to the North Carolina Firefighter Peer Support Network, and much more, the effort to ensure healthy mental wellness is paramount to Charlotte Fire Chief Reginald Johnson.