Special Districts Insurance Services (SDIS) has developed an innovative employee assistance program (EAP) for emergency responders, earning the pool an Award for Excellence in Performance from the Association of Governmental Risk Pools (AGRiP).
Since Jan. 2019, Public Safety EAP has provided confidential counseling, a wellness resource center, professional and personal coaching services, and other benefits to firefighters and EMS workers free of charge. The program has directly reduced health and other risks for Oregon’s public safety responders, who often work in challenging situations with physical and emotional demands.
Notably, during the 2020 wildfire season, the EAP delivered thousands of phone and in-person counseling sessions to emergency responders and their families.
Recognizing the critical role of public safety responders and importance of support to them, SDIS has generously made this program available to all cities and fire districts in Oregon, including those for which it does not provide workers’ compensation coverage.
In addition, Frank Stratton, executive director of SDIS and its parent organization, Special Districts Association of Oregon (SDAO), has been given the prestigious Award for Excellence in Leadership for his work with Oregon’s special districts and in pooling.
In his 30-year career with SDAO and SDIS, Frank has played an integral role in developing coverages and risk solutions for public sector special districts and schools in Oregon. AGRiP’s award recognizes not only his contributions to the public sector and risk pooling, but also his commitment to mentoring newcomers in order to foster a public sector service mindset.
“These two awards highlight the very best of public sector risk pooling and leadership, and it’s no surprise that SDIS and Frank Stratton have been selected,” said Jon Shull, AGRiP Board President. “Public Safety EAP is a model for our community and is a credit to Frank’s career of pool leadership.”
AGRiP’s Award for Excellence in Performance is given to a public entity risk pool that has developed and implemented a creative, efficient and effective idea, approach or program – especially one that can be shared with or transferred to other pools. AGRiP’s Award for Excellence in Leadership is given to an outstanding leader and/or mentor in the public entity pooling community who has made strong contributions to the industry and inspires others.