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Doherty’s private member’s bill on PTSD headed for a critical vote

Cariboo – Prince George Conservative MP Todd Doherty’s post-traumatic stress disorder bill will go to a vote in the House of Commons on Wednesday.

Doherty says he’s hopeful for a positive result. “It looks like the government is going to support our bill calling for a national framework with respect to PTSD and mental health injuries. I’m looking forward to watching 338 members of parliament stand up and support our first responders, veterans, and military members.”

If successful Bill C-211 will go to a third reading and a study.

According to Quebec Liberal MP Joel Lightbound over 4,000 Canadians who suffer from PTSD take their own lives each year.

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Doherty adds Bill C-211 has one main focus. “Developing consistent diagnosis care terminology and ensuring provinces have a cohesive framework in place that allows those who put their uniforms on every day get the same consistent care and diagnosis.”

Canada’s indigenous population has a heightened risk of PTSD due to historical and inter-generational trauma.

Workers who also put their lives on the line are more likely to suffer, according to Doherty.

“Soldiers coming back are seeing an incredible amount of human tragedy and experiencing trauma themselves. You’ve got paramedics, corrections officers, emergency dispatchers, police officers, and firefighters that experience human tragedy every day and it impacts people differently.”

Last week, the BC NDP brought back legislation on the Workers Compensation Act asking for proper care for firefighters, police, and paramedics.

In BC, 19 first responders committed suicide last year, but Doherty isn’t concerned about the numbers. “I stay away from the stats whether its percentage per industry or even the number of deaths annually because the reality is many of those go undetected and we still have that stigma we need to break.”

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