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Mental Health & Substance Use Screening



These Cops Needed Help and They Got it. Watch Their Stories Here



POPPA’s clients attest to the positive outcome of working with the agency.

“I am writing this in hope, that should someone on the job, or ready to retire find themselves in the same place I was, that there is hope.I was ready to retire. I was drinking every day as soon as I came home from work. I was completely miserable. My husband and I had gotten as far apart as possible. I was still working and was supposed to go to the pension section in the near future, when I just couldn’t take it anymore. I found myself to be unable to live without alcohol. I even considered suicide! I never thought I could consider such a thought. I didn’t want to go out like that. I finally got to the point where I had to tell someone what I had going on. I was lucky enough to have a friend at work who knew about POPPA. I was given the number to call, which I did.
I can’t express the gratitude I have today. I felt like my life was over, and now I have a future. I was sent to detox, then to rehab. I was then given time to actually get my life together while going to Alcoholics Anonymous. This is where I learned how to live as an alcoholic and be happy. I have since put my papers in to retire. I would have never imagined that life could be so good. Not only has my life in general changed, but, the relationships around me have changed.
As I said initially, I am so grateful to POPPA for helping me to be as healthy, mentally and physically, as I was when I came on the job.”
–21 year NYPD veteran


“I just want to take time to thank you, POPPA, for saving my life. When I entered the program in March, I never informed anyone that I had thoughts of suicide. I was an officer on patrol looking for a situation of killing or being killed. I was frustrated, angry, bitter, tired, depressed and lonely. I felt that no one cared about or understood me; not my family and definitely not anyone at work.I felt that I was the only supervisor who cared about things going on around me. I was tired of caring, and I was tired of being the only one who cared.
I was frustrated with my family. I felt that my family wanted only to destroy my dreams and to live in the ghetto. I was tired of trying and failing at life. I blamed everyone but myself for my situation. Death was a way to stop the pain.
POPPA changed my life and gave me life. I’ve learned that when a man gets himself together, his whole world comes together. I learned to give myself permission to make choices that are positive for me and that make me happy. My own happiness is the most important thing I can give myself. Then I can care about and help others. The only one who can change my situation in life is me.The time I spent at POPPA allowed me to slow down and examine myself. After 18 years on this job, I really needed that time with POPPA. I needed to learn how to live and to love myself. Life is worth living. I thank God for POPPA.”
–18 year NYPD veteran


“I am writing to thank the staff of POPPA for the assistance you gave me during a very trying time in my life. I have battled with alcohol addiction for many years. It was a battle I thought I could never win. Until I turned to POPPA for help.The care and compassion you gave me was more than I could ever have expected. The time you gave me and the treatment I received was vital in my early days of recovery. I was able to enter into recovery without fear.
I feel that POPPA has not only saved my life, but has given me back my life; a life free from alcohol and all the negative effects it brings. The services you provide to police officers are imperative.”
–NYC police officer


This letter is long overdue but I really needed time to settle into my new life. I say “new life” because that is truly what it is. I no longer wake up with that feeling of dread I was familiar with. I have a renewed confidence that I can deal with whatever challenge life brings my way. That in and of itself is nothing short of miraculous. I came into POPPA a trembling, disparaging wreck and emerged as a self-assured, composed, positive human being. I honestly never thought I would get well having been sick for so long. POPPA was the last stop on my endless train of false starts and failures. I just couldn’t get it together on my own. I was surviving and not living. I thought my days of being a police officer, of contributing positively to society were long over. That I’d need to take a disability pension because of my inability to function. I didn’t know what happened to me. Where did everything go so wrong? Couldn’t understand why I couldn’t cope. I lost sight of how to take care of myself. The feelings of despair were intolerable so I started to self-medicate and that opened Pandora’s Box. POPPA gave me time to collect myself and immerse myself in learning strategies to overcome the negativity and hopelessness that permeated my life. What do you say to the people who saved your life? Words cannot express the depth of my gratitude. You took care of every detail so I could focus on getting well. You held up your end of the bargain and I did as well and it worked. Imagine my surprise! I put in for a change of assignment and was transferred three months later. POPPA is truly confidential and my transfer was evidence of that. I thank God for the courage to make contact with POPPA. Little did I know it would be life-altering.
Sincerely yours,


I made the call to POPPA in March of 2020. I was in the worst state of mind in my life and needed to get help. I’ve worked my whole career in Brooklyn North, the majority of it as a Detective in a Squad. Early in my career I suffered PTSD from the tragic events of 9/11. I also suffered additional trauma during the course of my career. After working the scene of the Liu and Ramos double execution I began suffering panic attacks more than ever. I allowed so many things to take over my mind and body from this job. Quite honestly for the duration of my career I felt like a ghost walking among the living. I secluded myself from others. I stopped enjoying life. I became fearful to leave my home. I became afraid to be in large crowds. The biggest mistake I made was being afraid to tell my co-workers of how I suffer sometimes from the Anxiety, PTSD, and depression. I felt like a coward. This past March I was unable to live with the lie anymore and couldn’t shed it like I normally would do when I would go to work. Looking back now making the call to POPPA is one of the best things I ever did in my life. It saved me. It gave me the opportunity to focus on myself for the first time in my life. I never could have imagined being in a group setting with other cops and sharing. For me that was the hugest benefit. I realized that I wasn’t alone and have a whole new support network. I slowly got my feet under me and learned how to live in the present without obsessing of the past and future. I made real connections to people that mean the world to me. My last day in POPPA was emotional but I was prepared to go back to work glad for all the help I received. During my time in POPPA I realized that there need to be more of us in this program and that we have to take care of ourselves better. That’s what’s important in gaining control of your life so you can be that better Husband, Wife, Father, or Mother. I went back to work with my Gun, and ID card. Don’t believe the rumors if you need help because it can save your life. If you ever need to get help as I now see it you are not a coward, you are courageous.