Overseeing one of the largest Sheriff’s Offices in the nation makes Sheriff Michael Bouchard an authority on the highs and lows of police work.  He sat down with us to talk about the relationship between the stressors of being a first responder, and the rewards of serving the community.

Sheriff Bouchard shared his personal experience of the changing role of mental health within the world of police work.  He remembers being told to “man up” after a particularly harrowing call.  Now, Bouchard works to encourage an environment of openness and responsibility within his department, making sure that Oakland County officers have the means and opportunities to work through the difficulties of the job in a healthy way.

Bouchard remarked that the long, irregular hours of a policing, the necessary state of heightened vigilance at all times, and hardships outside of work make this a very difficult career.  However, the sheriff of over fifteen years reminded us, “when a man or a woman puts on the uniform, it’s because they want to help other people”.