Mindfulness and 911 Operations Employees - Changing the Culture in 9-1-1
August 6, 2018
Fee(s):This registration has a fee.
Frontline Telecommunicators are nearly four times as likely as the general population to suffer from Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder. They are at equal risk as police officers however, they have been overlooked by researchers and wellness professionals. According to Dr. Michelle M. Lilly’s study ”Psychological inflexibility and psychopathology in 9-1-1 telecommunicators published in the Journal of Traumatic Stress “Post-traumatic stress disorder symptoms that may be present in telecommunicators can impair decision-making abilities and functioning, which could pose significant risk to the general population that relies on them to quickly and effectively coordinate an emergency response.” The city of Denver 911 Emergency Communications Center in partnership with the Police Foundation and Be Mindful sought to address these issues by providing customized mindfulness based resilience programing.
Presenter: Athena Butler
- Participants will learn a basic overview of the science of mindfulness and how it relates to the field of front line telecommunicators
- We will discuss the development, implementation and outcomes of an organization wide mindfulness based resilience enhancement program. We will use Denver 911 as the example.
- Participants will also learn a neurorestorative exercise that they will be able to use for themselves as well as ways to bring mindfulness to their centers.
Athena Butler has been in public safety for over 30 years. She started her career with the Anne Arundel County Police Department, entering the police academy in 1986. She rose through the ranks during her 21+ years, and was the first African-American female to promote to Sergeant, Lieutenant, and Captain. She retired from policing in 2008 and 911 became her 2nd career. She served as Deputy Director of 911 Communications for the Washington, DC Office of Unified Communications, including during the 1st inauguration of President Barack Obama. She was selected as the 1st director of the City of Virginia Beach Emergency Communications & Citizen Services, which is a combined 911 & 311 department. In 2015, she was chosen to head Denver 9-1-1, with an emphasis on improving morale, citizen services and moving the agency into a larger facility. In her 2 ½ years, a large emphasis has been placed on employee engagement and wellness and fostering an environment of employee inclusion. She has a bachelor’s degree in Criminal Justice from the University of Maryland, and a master’s degree in Management with an emphasis on Public Safety from Johns Hopkins University.
Anne Marie Rossi, BeMindful
Robyn Winters, Be Mindful.
Jason Dilg, Be Mindful
Karen Amendola, Police Research Foundation