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Crisis Debriefing

Discussion about Crisis Debriefing started in 2005 when supervisors were concerned about debriefing child welfare staff after an egregious incident and they were concerned about secondary traumatic stress. That's where things really started: identifying secondary trauma and the need to address it.  From there, trainings for Secondary Traumatic Stress were developed and implement for supervisors and workers.

Several models of debriefing were studied and in 2012, Mary Pulido from the New York Society of Prevention to Cruelty to Children was brought in to present at a joint Administrators Conference. She presented on Restoring Resilience Response Model that they use for debriefing child welfare workers in New York City.  Following the conference, input was received from focus groups at the WCHSA Conference and from several volunteer counties about what they needed in terms of crisis debriefing. Based upon that input and our research, we decided to pursue a hybrid model of the Mitchell Model of Critical Incident Stress Management (CISM) and the Restoring Resilience Response Model (RRR model). 

The counties who helped initiate Crisis Debriefing felt that it would be beneficial to support one another and be able to call on debriefers trained from neighboring counties to debrief their staff if there was a critical incident. Each county trained in Crisis Debriefing has an assigned point person and an administrative contact that can be contacted for support, if needed. 


We offer a two-day Crisis Debriefing training where participants will receive a certificate from the International Critical Incident Stress Foundation (ICISF) for 14.0 Continuing Education Hours. We also offer an Advanced Crisis Debriefing training to allow further development of skills.


ROLES & Responsibilities 

Knowing how to structure a crisis debriefing team within your agency can be confusing.  This one-page chart can be a helpful guide to get you started.

Roles & Responsibilities for CISM


Already have an established crisis debriefing team but need help from an external agency?  We can help.

External Debrief Request Guidelines


Getting Started

Below are sample policies, procedures and forms from various county agencies.  These samples can be helpful for new counties who are creating their own policies, procedures and forms.  Familiarize yourself with the Critical Incident Crisis Debriefing Guidelines to get yourself started.

Critical Incident Crisis Debriefing Guidelines

Sample County Policies & Forms

It is important to have policies and procedures in place that can help create the structure for the crisis debriefing process to work.  It is up to each agency to decide how they want to develop their policies.  Important points to consider are what constitutes the need for a debriefing, when external debriefing is needed, identifying staff to be trained, making sure all staff know who to go to if they feel they need debriefing, and incorporating it into new employee orientation.

Dodge County

Outagamie County

Sheboygan County

Winnebago County

Sample Scenarios

Crisis Debriefing Training

We are in the process of scheduling the next training.  Please check back with us soon, or connect directly with Joanne Tulachka to indicate your interest in attending the next session.  The cost to attend is $70.00 for BHTP full members or $270.00 for partial and nonmembers.  

Advanced Crisis Debriefing Training

We will schedule an Advanced Crisis Debriefing training session once we have dates set for the Crisis Debriefing training.  Please check back with us soon, or connect directly with Joanne Tulachka to indicate your interest in attending an Advanced Crisis Debriefing training.  The cost to attend is $35.00 for BHTP full members or $135.00 for partial and nonmembers.  


Our Training Coordinator, Joanne Tulachka, can help.  Please reach out to Joanne at (920) 465-2117 to indicate your interest in attending a training or developing a Crisis Debriefing team at your agency.