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Event to feature film screening and panel discussion detailing the experiences of first responders

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Corporate / Canada

Event to feature film screening and panel discussion detailing the experiences of first responders

Employee Assistance Society of North America's 30th Annual Institute to explore unique mental health challenges faced by first responders and discuss strategies to mitigate impact of post-traumatic stress

VANCOUVER, May 4, 2018 /CNW/ - Post-traumatic stress continues to be the leading cause of disability among Canada's first responders, who represent the front line of support in communities across the country. On May 9, 2018, The Employee Assistance Society of North America (EASNA) will host a screening of a Canadian documentary detailing the experiences of first responders, followed by a panel discussion on the impact of and strategies for risk, trauma and disability in the workplace during the 30th Annual EASNA Institute in Vancouver.

Produced by award-winning filmmaker Karen Shopsowitz, The Other Side of the Hero provides viewers with a rare glimpse into life out of uniform. Viewers will be privy to the personal experiences of individual first responders, their families and colleagues as they contend with their emotionally demanding careers. Following the screening, a panel discussion moderated by Morneau Shepell's Paul Wittes, director of national and global clinical services, will explore employee assistance programs (EAPs) designed to mitigate risk, increase workplace safety for employees frequently exposed to trauma and reduce incidences of short- and long-term disability. Morneau Shepell is the sponsor of this session at the Institute.

EASNA invites members of the media to attend the film screening, panel discussion and following reception to learn more about the experiences and unique mental health challenges first responders face and the innovative services available to address them.

Event Details



 30th Annual EASNA Institute film screening, panel discussion and reception


Wednesday, May 9, 2018, from 3:30 to 6:00 p.m. PT

  • The Other Side of the Hero screening (3:30 to 4:15 p.m. PT)
  • Panel discussion (4:15 to 5:00 p.m. PT)
  • Reception (5:00 to 6:00 p.m. PT)


Pinnacle Hotel Harbourfront, Ballroom (2nd Level, 1133 West Hastings Street, Vancouver, Map   


 The panel discussion will feature the following speakers:

  • Paul Wittes, Director, National and Global Clinical Services, Morneau Shepell (moderator)
  • Karen Shopsowitz, award-winning filmmaker
  • Vince Savoia, Executive Director, Tema Conter Memorial Trust
  • Bob Rich, Chief Constable, Abbotsford Police Department
  • Joe Acker, Director, Clinical Practice, British Columbia Emergency Health Services


This event is open to media by invitation only. For more information regarding the 30th Annual EASNA Institute event, please visit

The Employee Assistance Society of North America is a trade association of employee assistance program companies, organizations and professionals dedicated to promoting high and fair standards of employee assistance practices through research, training, and networking. Learn more at

About Morneau Shepell
Morneau Shepell is the only human resources consulting and technology company that takes an integrated approach to employee assistance, health, benefits and retirement needs. The Company is the leading provider of employee and family assistance programs, the largest administrator of retirement and benefits plans and the largest provider of integrated absence management solutions in Canada. As a leader in strategic HR consulting and innovative pension design, the Company helps clients solve complex workforce problems and provides integrated productivity, health and retirement solutions. Established in 1966, Morneau Shepell serves approximately 20,000 clients, ranging from small businesses to some of the largest corporations and associations. With more than 4,000 employees in offices across North America, Morneau Shepell provides services to organizations across Canada, in the United States and around the globe. Morneau Shepell is a publicly-traded company on the Toronto Stock Exchange (TSX: MSI). For more information, visit

SOURCE Morneau Shepell Inc.

For further information: To RSVP, please contact Pam Valenzuela, Employee Assistance Society of North America,, 703.926.7458; Heather MacDonald, Morneau Shepell,, 416.390.2625