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OPP suicide memorial opens to the public

A new suicide memorial is now open at the OPP General Headquarters in Orillia. Construction on the memorial is now complete, and the public can access it from the main parking lot at the front of GHQ.

An OPP media release says the honours the lives of OPP officers who have died by suicide. The memorial recognizes that, while these officers did not die in the line of duty, the difficulties they experienced leading to their deaths are often related to their duty as law enforcement members

The OPP memoial is also part of a commitment to breaking down the barriers that prevent those struggling with their mental health from accessing the care and services they need to recover.

In addition to the outdoor memorial, the OPP will recognize its members who have died by suicide with a wall of engraved plaques displayed indoors at the Orillia headquarters. Family, friends and colleagues can submit names to be added to the memorial wall.

“After speaking with families of officers who had died by suicide, it was evident that we needed a way to recognize and remember the significant contribution these officers made to our communities and our province. This memorial is a testament to our members’ dedication to duty each and every day. It’s a testament to those who tragically died by suicide, but served our organization, our communities and our province with pride, professionalism and honour.” said OPP Commissioner Thomas Carrique

“Police personnel are among the professionals most likely to be exposed to occupational stress situations, all while protecting our communities. They often put themselves in harm’s way and experience incidents that most of us will never have to face. This memorial honours the members whose lives have been tragically lost and serves as a reminder of the importance of maintaining our mental health the same way we maintain our physical health. Our government has made mental health a priority, and we will continue providing our heroes in blue with the mental health and well-being supports they need to recover from trauma and distress.” said Solicitor General Sylvia Jones

“Over the past few years, I’ve had the honour of meeting many dedicated women and men that put on a uniform to serve and protect the people of Ontario. We know that work-related complex trauma and PTSD affect our first responders every day, and we’re constantly reminded of the difficulty of wearing a uniform when going to work. This new memorial – the first of its kind in Canada – will be a much-needed and safe place for colleagues, friends and family to remember their loved ones. Our government stands shoulder-to-shoulder with our dedicated policing heroes, and we will always ensure that we prioritize their health and well-being.” said Associate Minister of Mental Health and Addictions Michael Tibollo

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