WHITEHORSE—Members of the Association of Yukon Fire Chiefs (AYFC) focused on “Looking After Our Own – Saving Those Who Save Others” at the association’s annual general meeting this past weekend in Whitehorse.
“The Association of Yukon Fire Chiefs has been a valuable partner for the Yukon government in keeping citizens and communities safe,” Minister of Community Services Currie Dixon said. “From expanding basic 9-1-1, to ensuring that education and prevention programs are in place for first responders who face the prospect of stress-related injuries, we are working together to support our first responders and improve access to emergency services for Yukoners.”
The meeting included a workshop on post-traumatic stress disorder led by Jeff Dill of the Firefighter Behavioral Health Alliance and presentations on Critical Incident Stress Management by Jeff Simons from Yukon Emergency Medical Services. In a keynote speech on saving those who are saving others, Les Karpluk challenged AYFC members to take action and work together to make it a priority.
“We always appreciate the opportunity to gather together, collaborate and discuss shared issues in our fire services,” AYFC President Jim Regimbal said. “Saving those who save others is a very important theme. We need to know and recognize the signs of mental health issues with firefighters and first responders, build awareness, educate and have the proper procedures in place to support our team members in their times of need.”
The annual meeting wrapped up on August 22 with practical training, a friendly competition in vehicle extrication and an evening banquet hosted by the Yukon Fire Marshal’s Office.
Jim Regimbal, President
Association of Yukon Fire Chiefs
Ben Yu Schott
Communications, Community Services