A white paper commissioned by the Foundation has revealed that first responders (policemen and firefighters) are more likely to die by suicide than in the line of duty. In 2017, there were at least 103 firefighter suicides and 140 police officer suicides. In contrast, 93 firefighters and 129 police officers died in the line of duty. Suicide is a result of mental illness, including depression and PTSD, which stems from constant exposure to death and destruction.
HEROES will help cover copays of first responders when they seek mental health services. This is critical due to the economic status of most first responders. HEROES will also partner with existing mental health services to simplify the path to their services. HEROES will campaign to create public awareness of the issue and collaborate with the State of Arkansas to continue suicide prevention and stress management training for police cadets at the Arkansas Law Enforcement Training Academy.