The Perceived Impact of Peer Support in Addressing Burnout Among 911 Emergency Dispatchers

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911 Emergency Dispatchers encounter stressful situations and are known to manage life endangering incidents by way of telephone and/or radio. As they are trained to assist the public and the field units, the job they do may result in their own suffering; emotional or psychological trauma, as they hear the sufferings of others. It is time the dispatchers learn good coping mechanisms, find ways to help alleviate the stress of the job, and how to help themselves to realize that what they may be feeling is a normal result from an abnormal situation. The researcher based this dissertation on Emotional Labor Theory. As public servants they are taught to suppress their own emotions in order to align with the culture of the department they work for and the public they serve. This can become stressful for the dispatcher and if not dealt with properly can lead to burnout or worse. Literature will provide information about the benefits a peer support program can be to those who work in stressful situations. Being able to speak to someone who understands the job they do and who can relate, in a non-formal setting has been known to be beneficial. This dissertation is generally seeking to understand the relationship between peer support programs and burnout among 911 emergency dispatchers. The study utilized a non-experimental quantitative research study design. This was done to locate a connection, if there is one, between a peer support program, the perceived effectiveness, and the impact it has in addressing burnout among the 911 emergency dispatchers.
A dissertation submitted in partial fulfillment of the requirements for the Degree Doctor of Public Administration
Public Administration, Health Care Management