Crisis Intervention Program to begin for Franklin County employees

28 June 2024- The Franklin County Commissioners have unveiled a new initiative to assist employees who are struggling after experiencing a stressful incident on the job or in their personal lives.

Franklin County’s Critical Incident Stress Management (CISM) team is an internal confidential support group of trained county staff who offer debriefing services and “emotional first aid” to individual employees or groups of employees after they experience or witness some type of difficult event or upsetting situation. Examples of such incidents could be a telecommunicator who answers a 911 call with a tragic end, a children and youth caseworker who encounters a severe case of neglect during a home visit, or an employee who witnesses a fatal car accident on the way to work. Employees in need can receive support services by calling a non-emergency number or by emailing the CISM team email.

In establishing the CISM team, the county is emphasizing the importance of employees’ health and wellbeing in the workplace. 

On June 26, the Franklin County Commissioners announced the creation of a Critical Incident Stress Management team to assist county employees who have experienced a stressful incident on the job or in their personal lives.

“We know that some of our employees, through their positions with the county, are sometimes exposed to incredibly difficult situations,” said Franklin County Commissioner Chairman Dean Horst. “Being involved in those types of situations at any level can have an impact on one’s mental health, and we want to make sure our employees have a safe space to talk and that they have access to resources to cope and process what they’re experiencing.”

CISM team members participated in an extensive three-day training to prepare for their new roles. During the training, team members learned about communication techniques, group and individual crisis intervention strategies, stress management, and when follow-up services or referrals might be necessary, among other topics and techniques.

Employees participating in the CISM team are:

  • Tiffany Bloyer ﹘ director, Human Resources (team coordinator);
  • Cori Seilhamer ﹘ mental health program specialist, Franklin/Fulton Mental Health/Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities/Early Intervention;
  • Keri Kenney ﹘ human resources coordinator, Human Resources (team coordinator);
  • Catya Bookhamer ﹘ human services planning and development director, Tuscarora Managed Care Alliance (team clinical director);
  • Jennifer Courtney ﹘ drug and alcohol prevention program/adult probation case specialist, Franklin/Fulton Drug and Alcohol;
  • Heather Franzoni ﹘ deputy warden, Franklin County Jail;
  • Mike Giglio ﹘ forensic house case manager, Community Connections;
  • Darren Hahn ﹘ investigator, Public Defender’s office;
  • Ben Hardic ﹘ juvenile probation officer III, Juvenile Probation;
  • Stacie Horvath ﹘ administrator, Human Services Administration;
  • Tawnya Hurley ﹘ director, Franklin County Area Agency on Aging;
  • Robbie Mellott ﹘ lead 911 telecommunicator, Emergency Services;
  • Jason Miller ﹘ assistant communications coordinator, Emergency Services;
  • Travis Newman ﹘ adult probation officer III, Adult Probation;
  • Marlies Ries ﹘ application services manager, Information Technology Services;
  • Ben Sites ﹘ Franklin County Sheriff; and
  • Ashlin Yates ﹘ prison records specialist, Franklin County Jail

The CISM program officially kicks off July 1.