Cal Fire Peer Support

Start Date: 01/27/2021


HOPE AACR was asked to respond to Riverside County/Cal Fire stations along with Cal Fire Peer support to help firefighters deal with the working conditions brought on by the fires and Covid over the last year. Harley and I visited the east area of Riverside County. There were 5 stations on the POC's list for today. He called them from the parking lot at the training center and 4 were interested in our visit and set up times that worked for them. We dealt with driving from 1 station to another and many were 20 miles apart. We went at the times that they requested. Many of the visits were interrupted by call outs that either ended our visit or required we wait until they returned. Each station had approximately 3 men to visit with and the majority of each visit was their need to vent on what they are going through and how it is affecting them. There were atrocious stories of never getting a day off, being transferred from one end of the county to another to fill a spot. The involuntary over time was the biggest issue. Harley interacted with most of the men. They all were given autographed cards and they seemed to enjoy the visit and hearing about Harley etc. Our interaction was very minimal however compared to the lengthy discussions on their working environment. There were also breaks that were necessary for the POC to handle conference calls and other matters. I did not feel that our productivity was at the typical level for a deployment given the issues surrounding the firefighters. They need action, not consoling necessarily. However, they were very grateful for the effort put forth by the visit.

Agency: Cal Fire