Calls for Greater Mental Health services for volunteer firefighters

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Image (Mike Gilder): RFS Volunteers at Meads Creek Fire, December 2019.

As communities continue to wrestle with the impacts of the 2019-2020 Black Summer fires, many volunteer firefighters have experienced mental health fallout. While limited support services exist for volunteer firefighters, researchers such as Professor Sharon Lawn from Flinders University are advocating for better mental health resources.

Professor Lawn led a report, ‘After The Fires’ into the long-term stress experienced by Volunteers fighting a significant bushfire event. Her research found that up to eighteen and two years after the event is a critical time firefighters require access to mental health support. 

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