In this issue
Why we need a national disaster network (free article)
Jelena Watkins argues that the therapy profession needs to be integral to disaster planning at a national level. She sets out a vision for the future
Calling all affiliates
Could you become a critical incident responder? Nicola Jagielski explains what EAPs are looking for
A year after Grenfell
Anne Scoging, who leads the Counselling and Trauma Service at the London Fire Brigade (LFB), talks to Nicola Banning about how her team have responded since the night of the fire
Fight, flight or freeze: what do you do?
Knowing why we respond the way we do when disaster strikes is a must. Nicola Neath explains how to do this
Fiona Dunkley offers a toolkit for supporting yourself when working with trauma
A very human response
Can psychological responders meet the needs of modern-day critical incidents? Paula Fenn reflects on her experience following the Grenfell Tower fire
A space to heal
Gwen Randall considers how supervisors can support supervisees affected by vicarious trauma
Ageing matters (free article)
Jeremy Bacon: Ageing in the city
Talking purple (free article)
David Caldwell: Unlocking your potential
Sandi Mann: On being rude
Julie Hughes: Choosing your supervisor
Sarah Worley-James: GDPR – behaviour change
Notes from the chair
Nicola Neath: Prepared, not scared
Editorial: On the front line
2017 demanded even more from our emergency services and NHS staff than usual.
Terrorist atrocities in London and Manchester, and the Grenfell Tower fire took experienced professionals to unknown limits. The fire was described as ‘unprecedented’ and the UK saw its worst loss of life since World War 2. With the passing of moving first anniversaries, vigils and memorials, the repercussions that endure are laid bare.
The current threat level for international terrorism in the UK remains at severe and means that the country must be in a permanent state of readiness. Aware of the role for therapists, in the event of a traumatic event, BACP is working with Cruse to put together advice to members who want to volunteer. But what else can we do?
In April, BACP Workplace hosted a day’s CPD, Working with critical incidents: prepared not scared: are you ready to respond? Speakers working with individuals, organisations, EAPs and at a national level, explored how our profession has responded to traumatic events. This issue of BACP Workplace explores their learning, shares best practice and proposes a future direction of travel.
I don’t remember a day’s training quite like it. The atmosphere captured the dedication, intensity and the spirit of care and exploration needed when you step outside the counselling room and into a critical incident. It’s an evolving field, but working with employees, employers and EAPs, the workplace sector is well-placed to support both the planning and the response.
Preparation, collaboration, reflexivity and maturity, alongside an awareness of our own very real limits to trauma exposure, are all required. In the lead article, Jelena Watkins calls for BACP to step up and collaborate to organise in ‘peace-time’ a network of paid specialists across the UK who are able to respond the next time that disaster strikes. It’s a call to arms because it’s not a question of ‘if’, but ‘when’.
Editor, BACP Workplace