Trauma Exposure: Manage it before it manages you!, course is available. Next Class: March 30, 2016 in Albany, OR (Linn Co). If you are interested in attending, hosting and or sponsoring this course, provide your info on the Contact Us page by clicking below.

Oregon Public Safety Peer Support

This site serves as a resource for all public safety workers throughout the State of Oregon.  Whether you are a police officer, firefighter, 9-1-1 dispatcher, corrections deputy, jailer, state corrections officer, parole & probation officer, paramedic, chaplain, etc., if you are looking for stress management resources or support, this is a good place to start.

The State of Oregon is geographically vast.  Although the Willamette Valley has easy access to public safety support, far reaching areas do not.  The multiple tragedies in law enforcement between 2011 and 2012, including the murders of three peace officers, the attempt murder of another, public safety suicides, etc., have stretched thin even the areas with substantial support. There is an obvious and immediate need for resources and support.  You will find them here – it is up to you whether you use them.

The site content is maintained by public safety workers from throughout the state who do their best to provide the most current and relevant resources available to first responders in need.  The site is not perfect, but it is a start.  If you cannot find what you are looking for locally, reach out to one of the national resources provided.


Stress Symptoms

When a human is under extreme stress, the mind and body will take over.  For the most part, the stress reactions you experience, either during or after an incident (personal or professional) are not within your control.  Your primitive brain takes over essential functioning, allowing only the pertinent organs to continue working.  The following are some of the stress responses you may experience during or after an incident:

Behavior:  Excessive alcohol intake, paranoia, isolation, hypervigilance

Physical:  Rapid heartbeat, sweating, nightmares, crying, shaky hands, headaches, loss of bladder or bowel control

Emotional:  Anger, guilt, survivor’s guilt

Thinking:  Loss of concentration, easily distracted, difficulty reading a book

Spirituality:  Turn to or away from religion or spirituality


NEWS FLASH – All of these symptoms (and more) are absolutely NORMAL.  You are not a freak.  You are not weak.  You are not losing your mind.  You are a human being going through an intense experience in which your primitive brain had to take over.  The symptoms will decrease over time.  If several symptoms remain after five or more weeks, ask for help from a mental health professional who understands public safety stress.  When you call your EAP (Employee Assistance Program) or begin looking for a licensed counselor, ask for a counselor who is familiar with public safety stress or trauma.  If your EAP cannot help you, contact this website – we’ll find someone capable of assisting you, or at least point you in the right direction.