NLU’s David San Filippo, Ph.D., has a daughter who chose law enforcement as a career, and that inspired him to work with the Wounded Officers Initiative, which supports law enforcement officers who have been injured.
San Filippo, chair of the Health Studies Programs in NLU’s College of Professional Studies and Advancement and a licensed mental health counselor, volunteers as clinical director of the Wounded Officers Initiative’s Blue Line Support program.
He appeared on “Law Enforcement Today,” a podcast and Facebook page with more than 680,000 likes and followers nationally, to explain that Blue Line Support provides emotional support and mental health counseling for wounded officers.
Many wounded officers suffer serious disabilities which prevent them from returning to work, and some lose a sense of purpose and fall victim to depression. Others suffer PTSD symptoms, and cannot escape the triggers because they experienced violence in their own communities, on familiar ground, San Filippo told host Jay Wiley on the April 30 show.
San Filippo, who is a military veteran, advised any wounded law enforcement officer feeling out-of-sorts, or their family members, to contact the Wounded Officers Initiative Blue Line Support at 855-964-2583 or through https://www.facebook.com/WoundedOfficersInitiative/
Trained peer support officers will speak with callers, including spouses and family members, to provide a listening ear, support and encouragement. In cases in which the peer support officers feel it would benefit the caller to engage with a mental health professional, they will notify San Filippo. He will connect them with a mental health professional in their geographic area who has experience working with law enforcement officers.
“My wife and I are parents of a police officer, and because of my education, background and experience, I thought I’d like to work with this,” San Filippo said on the show.