Incident Management Team/Human Resource
Specialists Roles and Support
Critical Incident Stress Management
In recognition of the complexity related to CISM,
the following guidelines provide information to support
Incident Management Teams (IMT’s) and Human
Resource Specialists (HRSP) during Critical Incidents.
The guidelines remove some of the burdens from the
IMT, reduce confusion, and allow tasks to be accomplished
in less time.
In the event of a critical incident, the following
- Prepare, review or revise team protocols specific
- Inform the HRSP of CISM protocols as early as
- Utilize the HRSP to perform defusing, and as
a result consider whether CISM resources are warranted.
If needed, the HRSP can complete the CISM order
form. Agency Administrator approval is also required.
- Utilize HRSP as the liaison between the IMT and
- Assign IMT members to work directly with the
HRSP. At a minimum we recommend; IC/Deputy IC, Planning
Section Chief, Logistics Section Chief/Facilities
Unit Leader, MEDL, Liaisons, Safety Officer and
Operations Section Chief.
- Continue to keep the HRSP informed of new information
related to the event, individuals involved, and
when they are expected back at camp, etc.
- While getting a CISM resource on-site is important,
it may not be an immediate need. CISM support is
considered most effective 24-72 hours after the
incident. Until then, timely information sharing
is critical for those assigned or associated with
- Help identify individuals directly and indirectly
affected by the event and ensure location and contact
information is collected. This may include individuals
not in fire camp.
- Additional needs of those potentially impacted,
such as telephone access, dry and/or clean clothes,
privacy, etc. need to be secured.
- Remember not to forget yourselves. The stress
associated with a particularly traumatic event can
affect IMT members.
- Successful CISM requires logistical support.
Assist the HRSP to provide CISM resources with locations
to meet potentially affected personnel in a safe
and comfortable environment.
- Keep HRSP’s informed of any investigations
so coordination among the CISM teams, affected individuals,
and the investigators may occur.
- Upon completion of the CISM event, work with
the HRSP to complete a CISM after action review.
- Review the policies for CISM identified by the
host agency/unit and provide feedback to the IMT.
- Upon arrival in fire camp, meet with the Command
and General Staff to discuss team CISM protocols.
Brief the IMT on general CISM procedures.
- As needed, clarify any concerns with the IMT
related to team protocols.
- Contact and utilize the HRSP Geographic Area
Coordinator for CISM assistance and to identify
key CISM resources.
- Serve as the point of contact for facilitating
- Conduct defusing with affected personnel and
make recommendations to IMT for CISM support.
- Identify appropriate CISM resources to match
the needs of the event and be the liaison between
the IMT and CISM resource.
- Be available to brief Incident Personnel in regard
to CISM process.
- Coordinate with the SOFR and OSC related to the
welfare of the crews, and if warranted, recommend
a stand down, relocation or reassignment of personnel.
- Coordinate with appropriate IMT personnel related
to logistical support of impacted crews (telephones,
meeting places, need for clergy, etc.)
- Provide input to the IC/Deputy IC on observed
or reported IMT reactions related to the CISM event.
- Order additional HRSP’s to support the
- Coordinate CISM after action review, providing
frank input of positives and needs for improvement
in the CISM process.