Trauma Counseling Overview for the AFT

Trauma Counseling


The AFT provides a free trauma counseling benefit for all active and on-leave members. Members who experience a covered incident are provided counseling with a Master's level or higher therapist trained in post-traumatic incident recovery.

Coverage is 24/7, 365, both on and off the job, if a member experiences an aggravated assault, domestic violence, sexual assault, a mass shooting, terrorist act, or a major disaster. Members are covered while at work if they are bullied, harassed, threatened, traumatized by witnessing a violent incident, infected by a contagious disease, or face a secondary trauma, such as the loss of a student, patient, or someone under their care.

Counseling services are available for up to one year after a covered incident

Members who use the program are provided up to 21 hours of counseling

This is a no-cost benefit for all active AFT members

What member are saying about the AFT trauma counseling program:

“I am a nurse with 20 years in the infectious disease unit. During the spring and summer of 2020 my unit was 100% COVID. The amount of loss we experienced was unimaginable. My local president made me aware the counseling benefit provided by the AFT. I finally reached out for help that fall and was diagnosed as having a post- traumatic stress injury. I received three months of counseling with a therapist who specializes in trauma recovery. Without this assistance I’m afraid I would no longer be a nurse. Thank you for providing this benefit!”

—AFT Nurses & Health Professionals Member

“I was experiencing daily harassment from my supervisor and his supervisor in a coordinated effort to set me up for an insubordination claim. The treatment I received was affecting my students and my family. My AFT advisors were very supportive and told me that it was bullying and retaliation. They also referred me to the AFT’s counseling program. There was no cost to me and the treatment I received helped me get through the harassment. I would highly recommend the AFT’s Trauma Counseling Program.”

—AFT Pennsylvania Member

“I had suffered a traumatic brain injury from an assault at work. I cannot say enough good things about the counseling that I received from the Trauma Counseling Program through the AFT. I had been diagnosed with post-traumatic stress disorder after the incident. I would highly recommend to anyone that has experienced any kind of trauma to utilize this program to help in the healing process. I certainly would not hesitate using their services again.”

—NYSUT Member

“As an educator, we often interact with students in crisis and unfortunately last year I was faced with the loss of two students. The grief was unbearable and I began to suffer both emotionally as well as physically. I found out about the trauma counseling benefit while browsing the union’s website and was quickly connected to a counselor. The therapy I received was transformative and truly saved my life. No words can explain the healing and growth that took place in my sessions. The in-take process was seamless and the hardest part was simply making the call and acknowledging I needed help. I am forever thankful for this service and encourage all in need to utilize this incredible resource.”

—AFT Higher Education Member

“The AFT counseling program has been a blessing since the day I began. After the loss of a student–then the loss of my father–the therapy for coping with the massive amount of grief was an absolute necessity. My weekly meetings are convenient because they are done online. I was initially worried that this would hinder my progress due to feeling detached or desensitized through technology; however, that was not the case at all. The growth I have experienced mentally, physically, and emotionally has been indispensable. The certified therapist was selected based on my personal needs, and the assistance from AFT during that process has been nothing short of remarkable.”

—AFT Indiana Member

The AFT-provided trauma counseling benefit is a part of a comprehensive post-incident recovery program called Trauma Coverage. Locals have the ability to purchase the financial benefits of Trauma Coverage for their membership.

A program can be designed for locals to provide members immediate financial assistance to them and their families after a covered incident. Benefits include 100% of their regular pay from all sources, the lost wages of a family member providing at-home support, reimbursement for out-of-pocket medical expenses, and accidental death coverage.

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Members and leaders looking to learn more about the AFT's free trauma counseling benefit and locals interested in learning more about the financial benefits of Trauma Coverage may contact the AFT's dedicated servicing agent:

Eric Hukey

© 2023 Trauma Coverage
AFT Trauma Counseling Program