A private member’s bill proclaiming June 27 as PTSD Awareness Day in Ontario has become law.
The bill, brought forward by Brantford-Brant MPP Will Bouma, was included in the Ontario government’s budget and received royal assent on Wednesday.
“This is an important day for everyone in Ontario who has ever suffered from trauma,” Bouma said. “There are so many people who are suffering in silence and I’m hoping that this will increase awareness of PTSD (post-traumatic stress disorder) and help bring an end to the silence.
“We want to make sure those most affected, women who have faced sexual violence, emergency first responders and those in uniform, know they can reach out for support.”
Several organizations have started planning events for Ontario’s first PTSD Awareness Day and Bouma plans to attend as many events as possible.
Gavin Jacklyn, of the Brantford Professional Firefighters Association, and Mark Baxter, president of the Brantford Police Association were at Queen’s Park to watch as the bill passed into law.
“This is topic is near and dear to our hearts as an organization,” said Lill Petrella of the Canadian Mental Health Association Brant Haldimand-Norfolk. “We see the toll PTSD takes on those living with it and how it impacts a family.”
“PTSD day will draw much needed-attention to this condition.”