Friday Update 3-26-21
Updated On: Apr 16, 2021


Sisters & Brothers,

Local 1014, the Department and Board of Supervisors remain committed to a Labor-Management Collaborative to address behavioral health fitness and peer support for our members.  Brother Scott Ross is one of the few “Master Peer Instructors” for the IAFF.  Master Instructors are appointed by the IAFF General President after a Local, the District Vice President, and the Fire Chief recommends someone for an appointment.  A rigorous evaluation of the individual's experience, education, work as a peer counselor, and ability to teach others are all taken into account. If an individual qualifies, the General President appoints that individual. IAFF District 10 is comprised of California, Hawaii, New Mexico, Arizona, and Guam and is the largest District in the IAFF.  Brother Ross leads one of the most experienced and educated peer support teams in the United States and Canada with seasoned lead peers and culturally competent clinician psychologists.  

Our LACOFD Peer Team is one of the largest in the nation with individuals who work tirelessly on behalf of our own members, and also when called for members throughout the nation.  Local 1014 PEER Team has responded to 9/11, Katrina-Rita, Atlanta Olympic Bombing, Route 91 Harvest Festival Shooting, El Paso Mass Shooting, Woolsey Fire, Granite Mountain Fire, individual firefighter suicides, fire incident fatalities and injuries, with most recent work in Chula Vista, Santa Clara, and Prescott, Arizona. 

We should all be very proud of the team's work on behalf of our Department and more importantly, the lives saved and positively influenced by the work.  This would not be possible without a commitment from both the Department and the Union to embrace the Peer Support Program and principles.  Fire Chief Osby has been extremely supportive of our efforts both in the county and outside of the county and leads as an example to other fire chiefs and departments.  We set the standard for excellence in the program and commitment to serving to help our brothers and sisters within and beyond borders.  

This week we are venturing into our first “in-person” IAFF Peer Support Training.  It is wonderful to sit face to face and train again.  We are hosting small classes with physical distancing, face masks, cleaning stations, and more. We are teaching two two-day classes this week and next.  These classes include members of Local 1014, the Association of Chiefs, non-sworn members of our Department and our retirees, as well as LACOLA lifeguards.  The IAFF has wrapped its arm around all of our partners in Peer Support, and this has helped to diversify and expand our reach to all who need the help. 

View Healing Our Own Resources

We are proud to have host the classes at the 1014 Union Hall, and we thank all those who have been interviewed, vetted, and selected to attend the training, both current Peer Support Team members and new members as well.  The classes include two days of curriculum and a two-hour online training as well.  Scenarios and role-play exercises are also a part of the training to help prepare our teams to answer the many calls the Peer Support Team receives dealing with everything from firefighters, fire personnel, lifeguards to our families personal issues including drug and alcohol addiction, post-traumatic and cumulative stress, critical incident response, suicide and other issues pushing our members to the limits each and every day. 

Please take time to refresh yourself with the peer support resources our Department has by scanning the QR Code on your Peer Support Posters in the stations and offices, or by taking a look at orFirestrong.  Help members break the stigma of behavioral health issues and injury. Encourage each other to access the help that is available in a confidential setting with Peers and Clinicians who know how to help us face those challenges.  

Stand together and support each other as we tackle the rigors of our extremely challenging profession.  

In Solidarity, 

President Dave Gillotte and the Local 1014 Executive Board 

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