The goal of peer support is to provide all public safety employees in an agency the opportunity to receive emotional and tangible support through times of personal or professional crisis and to help anticipate and address potential difficulties. Ideally, peer support programs are developed and implemented under the organizational structure of the parent agency. Receiving support from the highest levels within an organization helps a peer support program to work effectively.
These guidelines are intended to provide information and recommendations on forming and maintaining a peer support structure for sworn and civilian personnel in law enforcement agencies. The guidelines are not meant to be a rigid protocol but reflect the commonly accepted practices of the IACP Psychological Services Section members and the agencies they serve. The guidelines work best when applied appropriately to each individual and agency situation.