It’s the first event of it’s kind in Northern BC. Thanks to a $50,000 Civil Forfeiture Grant, the “Healing Through Learning” conference is being held at the Civic Centre. The three-day event is bringing together over 300 police-based victim service workers and community agents to learn best practices for dealing with victims of trauma. But what about the mental health of the responders themselves? Coordinator of RCMP Victim Services, Krista Levar, says first-hand trauma and second-hand trauma are linked. “You can’t separate those two because people who work in this field often become exposed to trauma and then thus become- get affected by it, and get secondary-trauma or develop PTSD… because the work is heavy.”
On Wednesday, an RCMP member shared his own experience with PTSD. The goal was to reach out to other professionals in the field. Guest speakers from around the country will present at the conference, with Thursday’s conference focusing on healing and coping methods for victims.