The Law Enforcement Mental Health and Wellness Act (LEMHWA) Grant: Supporting Mental Health in Law Enforcement
Law enforcement is a challenging and stressful profession that requires individuals to make quick decisions in high-pressure situations. The nature of the job can take a toll on the mental health and well-being of law enforcement officers, and it is important to provide officers with resources they need to function well amidst the challenges they face.
The Law Enforcement Mental Health and Wellness Act (LEMHWA) was enacted in 2018 to address the mental health needs of law enforcement officers. The LEMHWA grant is a key component of this legislation, providing funding to support the development and implementation of mental health and wellness programs for law enforcement agencies.
The LEMHWA grant is administered by the U.S. Department of Justice’s Bureau of Justice Assistance (BJA). The grant is available to state, local, and tribal law enforcement agencies to support programs that promote mental health and wellness among their officers. The grant can be used to fund a range of activities, including:
The LEMHWA grant is an important step forward in addressing the mental health needs of law enforcement officers. A study by the Ruderman Family Foundation found that in 2017, more police officers died by suicide than in the line of duty (Karp, 2019). This highlights the urgent need for initiatives to support the mental health and well-being of law enforcement officers. By providing funding and support for mental health and wellness programs, the grant helps to ensure that law enforcement agencies are better equipped to support the well-being of their officers.
Law enforcement officers face unique challenges that can impact their mental health and well-being. The LEMHWA grant acknowledges this fact and provides much-needed support to help officers cope with the stresses of their job. By providing funding for mental health and wellness programs, the grant helps to ensure that officers have access to the resources and support they need to maintain their well-being. It is a critical step forward in promoting the health and resilience of law enforcement officers, and it is essential that we continue to support this important initiative.
The Peace Officer Wellness, Empathy & Resilience (POWER) Training Program offers one possible application of LEMWHA funding. POWER is a nationally certified innovative wellness program that may be a good fit for agencies seeking to increase resources for officers in the area of physical, mental and emotional wellness, and to better manage stressors and work-life balance. For more information on POWER, visit c4c.link/POWER-training.