The government of Canada is taking steps to address mental health issues amongst RCMP officers.
In a conference at the RCMP Heritage House Friday afternoon, Minister of Public Safety Ralph Goodale announced a contract has been awarded to the University of Regina to study the long term effects of policing on officers mental health.
Goodale says RCMP officers work is perhaps the most mentally stressing of all.
“These brave officers know only too well that policing can and does take a deep emotional and physical toll,” he says.
“It is probably the most demanding form of public service.”
Dr. Nicholas Carleton, Professor and Scientific Director at the Canadian Institute of Public Research at the University of Regina, will be leading the study.
He says this contract, valued at $8.9 million, will allow him and his team of research to study mental health in a new and more in-depth manner than ever before.
“I think for the first time ever, to actually have the longtitudinal data that’s necessary for us to speak to things like cause,” notes Carleton.
“Most of the data that we have these days involves cross-sectional studies. That means it’s hard for us to say with any real assurance that one thing caused another thing to occur.”