Frank Ray Launches Mental Health Campaign FRAY To Help First Responders
Before Frank Ray was a country singer, he was a police officer. He knows firsthand the mental health hurdles first responders face just doing their jobs. Now he’s trying to give back.
Last week, Ray joined U.S. Senator Ben Ray Lujan (New Mexico) for a panel at the U.S. Capitol to discuss the mental health challenges and the services and resources required to support their mental health needs.
The trip launched Ray’s mental health campaign “FRAY,” which takes its name from First Responders mentAl claritY.
Ray was inspired to form the campaign in 2022 when visiting the Metropolitan Police Academy in Washington D.C., which was intended to include just short remarks and autographs, took a deeper meaning. Since then, the singer has worked to gather resources and has visited with first responders on his current tour with Old Dominion.
“Conversations about mental health have always been a taboo subject in the first responder community largely in part because of the negative stigma attached to it,” Ray said in a statement. “First responders are notorious for compartmentalizing the trauma they witness every day, so I’m glad we’re moving the conversation forward into a normal topic of conversation for this community of brave men & women who protect us. Providing the resources for them from like-minded organizations and people like me, who have walked a mile in their shoes, helps pave the way for a more engaging conversation.”
FRAY’s goal is to be a hub of information and conversation as the singer continues incorporating visits and discussions with first responders into as many of his tour stops and communities as possible.
In addition to Ray, other speakers at the March 7 panel included: Congresswoman Grace F. Napolitano, founder and Co-Chair of the Congressional Mental Health Caucus, Miguel Tittman, Captain and International Association of Fire Fighters Local 244 President, Gregory H. Alemian Sr., Sergeant with Emergency Response Teams (S.W.A.T.) Negotiator Unit Metropolitan Police Department, Washington D.C., Dr. Tamara Campbell, MD, PsyD, D.F.A.P.A., Executive Director for the Veterans Health Administration (V.H.A.) Office of Mental Health and Suicide Prevention and more.
For more information on FRAY, please visit www.frayoc.org.