Today, in recognition of both National Police Week (May 10-16) and Mental Health Awareness Month, the Town of Davidson asked its own Corporal Vernon Siders to share some insights into caring for our mental health. Corporal Siders started his career in law enforcement with the City of New York Police Department (NYPD) and personally witnessed the terrorist attack on September 11, 2001. A U.S. Marine, Corporal Siders was called up as a Marine Reservist and deployed for combat in the Iraq War. He joined the Davidson Police Department in August 2008 and is assigned to the Administration Division as a Detective and Community Services Corporal.
A Message from Davidson Corporal Vernon Siders
As an active member of the Davidson Police Department, I realize the importance of taking care of both my physical and mental health. Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, experiencing anxiety can take a toll on my mental health, and social distancing increases my feelings of isolation and loneliness.
The Town of Davidson provides all of its employees with opportunities to seek physical, mental and emotional support through the Employee Assistance Program. This has helped me in the past and continues to do so during these trying times.
I’m thankful that there are additional resources made available not only to me, but to others as well. Davidson Lifeline and Mental Health America (MHA) have provided a few links that I highly recommend:
For Virtual QPR (Question, Persuade and Refer)
For Mental Health and Coronavirus
For CDC: Coping with the Coronavirus
I hope that these tools are useful for those who may feel isolated from their jobs, friends and community. Remember, if you find yourself in an emotional crisis and need help, dial 911 immediately.
The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration’s (SAMHSA) tip sheets Coping During Infectious Disease Outbreaks (http://bit.ly/2ThfO2X) and Tips for Social Distancing, Quarantine, and Isolation During an Infectious Disease Outbreak (http://bit.ly/2xpbCXQ) can be shared or downloaded for distribution.
The Disaster Distress Helpline (DDH) provides crisis counseling and support for anyone in the United States experiencing distress or other behavioral health concerns related to any natural or human-caused disaster, including public health emergencies. Calls (1-800-985-5990) and texts (text “TalkWithUs” to 66746) are answered by a network of independently-operated crisis centers around the country, who provide psychological first aid, emotional support, crisis assessment and intervention, and referrals to local/state behavioral health services for follow-up care & support. The DDH is a program of SAMHSA administered by Vibrant Emotional Health, an MHA affiliate.