Cyprus Police personnel, currently numbering approximately 5000 police officers and 600 firefighters, are obliged to carry out a wide and varied range of duties. Due to the nature of their mission, police members are subjected to various forms of danger which pose threats, not only to their physical, but also mental health. There was thus an imperative need for the creation of a framework responsible for mental health issues for the members of the Cyprus Police.
The Personnel Support Office was established on the 10th of July 2013, within the framework of the implementation of the policies and plans that have been initiated by the Ministry of Justice and Public Order, with the aim of further upgrading and improving the effectiveness and efficiency of Cyprus Police, as derived from the Governance Program of the President of the Republic of Cyprus and its Policy in the field of Security.
The mission of the Personnel Support Office is to promote mental health among the members of Cyprus Police. In order to fulfill this mission, the Office organizes training and preventative programmes and arranges personal, confidential sessions, for mental health assessment and emotional diffusion. It must be noted that the content of confidential personal meetings is protected by professional secrecy and no reference is made either in the Personal Folder or in the Personal Record of the Police Member that visits the Office.
According to Police Order 4/18, the content of a confidential personal meeting can only be revealed in the following cases:
(a) If there is real risk for the member
(b) If there is real risk for third parties
(c) If there is reasonable suspicion regarding abuse of the minors, the elderly, the disabled or other vulnerable groups.
Within the framework of carrying out its duties, the Office cooperates with various mental health and academic institutions in Cyprus. It is worth mentioning the memorandums of cooperation signed on the 17th of November 2015 between Cyprus Police (Personnel Support Office) and the Center for Research and Counseling Services (KESY), of the University of Nicosia and the Cyprus Institute of Psychotherapy. These memorandums concern the provision of psychological services to members of the Cyprus Police on an individual, family, and / or group level, upon referral by the Personnel Support Office. In addition, the members of the Office cooperate with experts who specialize in specific areas of psychology during the organization and presentation of educational and preventive programmes.
Currently, the Personnel Support Office is located at the Cyprus Police Academy and operates from Monday to Friday, from 7am to 3pm. Under special circumstances, or in cases of emergency, sessions with police members can be arranged besides office hours by contacting the Office.
The members of the Personnel Support Office also visit the Police Divisions, where sessions with police members can be arranged as required.
For further information, police members may contact the Office on 2280-8215 and 2280-8220 or via email on: firstname.lastname@example.org