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____ Friday February 19, 2016 ____


Stress Disorder

Ontario to Introduce Legislation to Support First Responders with PTSD

New Law Would Help Expedite Identification, Intervention and Treatment

Queens Park - Ontario intends to introduce legislation that would create a presumption that post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) diagnosed in first responders is work-related, leading to faster access to resources and treatment.

If passed, the Supporting Ontario’s First Responders Act (Posttraumatic Stress Disorder), 2016 would allow faster access to WSIB benefits and timely treatment, ultimately supporting positive recovery outcomes by:

• Once diagnosed with PTSD, expediting the claims process to be eligible for WSIB benefits

• Removing the need to prove a causal link between PTSD and a workplace event

• Requiring employers to implement PTSD prevention plans within the workplace

The proposed presumption would apply to police officers, firefighters, paramedics, workers in correctional institutions and secure youth justice facilities, dispatchers of police, firefighter and ambulance services, and First Nations emergency response teams.

This is the next step in the government’s strategy to prevent or mitigate the risk of PTSD and provide first responders with faster access to treatment and the information they need to stay healthy.

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