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The Grizzly Gazette

The Grizzly Gazette

The Grizzly Gazette

Appreciating First-Responders

It used to be that appreciating first responders was a given; writing letters in elementary school or saying thank you to a police officer seems to be a lost act today. 

First responders are an essential part of our society. Whether we realize it or not, they are always working hard to protect us. 

Every day, law enforcement, firefighters, and paramedics sacrifice their own safety in order to ensure ours. It’s easy to overlook their courage and bravery because often, we take our security for granted.

For many, work days are predictable, they know what to expect, how to respond, and when they will get to go home. This is not the case for first responders, however, every day they are faced with scary, intense situations.

Law enforcement respond to situations as simple as traffic tickets, but even simple situations can quickly become dangerous. Yet, they willingly choose a job with so much unpredictability. Police Sergeant Johnson said, “I wanted a job where I could work outside, have job security, and I could make a difference.” 

As for fire service members–who do more than just fight fires–they provide emergency medical services. Paramedics play a similar role, without the fire-fighting. 

One of the most overlooked first responders is 911 operators–the literal first responders to an accident. Operators are the first ones to hear about a tragic event and are responsible for getting help to callers, making them extremely crucial in protecting the community. 

These Frontline workers are there for some of the worst days of people’s lives. On a daily basis, they are faced with death, injury, and pain. The constant exposure to these things often results in trauma. First responders are at a significantly higher risk of developing Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD), along with depression and anxiety. 

And still, they continue to show up for their job and our country. For this reason, we must appreciate and respect their selflessness and dedication; displaying our appreciation does not need to be in the form of grand gestures, it can be as easy as saying “thank you” the next time you see a first responder. 

Additionally, October 28 is National First Responders Day. On this day, we honor firefighters, paramedics, EMTs, police officers, and 911 operators. While it may not be possible to do this every day, an effort can surely be made to thank first responders on October 28.

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