Tuesday, November 09, 2004

Proposal for a Citizen Response Team

I've been thinking about critical incident stress management and our Tidewater CISM Team. Our purpose is to serve emergency services providers in southeastern Virginia. Who takes care of the average Joe? We've done interventions where bystanders to the incident showed up; I've done interventions for church groups who'd experienced a traumatic event; I've done interventions for businesses. But that's not what we're about.

We need something else. Here's a thought:
Citizen Response Team: Crisis Stress Management
Citizens Helping Citizens

Purpose: Provide crisis intervention services, in the form of Critical Incident Stress Management interventions, to citizens who help other citizens and, because of that, experience psychological trauma.

Vision: Lay citizens, serving as first responders or witnesses to a traumatic event, receive needed crisis intervention in the form of critical incident stress management interventions; CISM interventions help these citizens integrate the event in their own lives, mitigate critical incident stress reactions, and develop healthy coping skills.

The target population for the Crisis Response Team is citizens who experience traumatic stress when serving as an emergency first responder or as a bystander. These citizens might be members of the Community Emergency Response Team, members of the Crisis Line, employees to workplace traumatic events, and bystanders to a traumatic event.

The Citizen Response Team delivers only interventions as specified by the International Critical Incident Stress Foundation.

The Citizen Response Team will be composed of citizen peers and mental health professionals. The minimum training for all team members are two ICISF courses: Individual Crisis Intervention and Basic Group Crisis Intervention. The CRT will be lead by a clinical director and an administrative director. The administrative director will be a staff member of the sponsoring agency; the clinical director will be a mental health professional appointed by the sponsoring agency.

The Citizen Response Team will be an outreach service of the sponsoring agency which is a registered not-for-profit corporation in southeastern Virginia.
What do you think?


  1. Excellent idea, works for me. Di

  2. Well, first comment didn't post so here goes again. Great idea as usual, I'm behind you all the way, if you are mental health person, I would vol for admin. Di