SUSSEX COUNTY, NJ – The full feature documentary film Code 9 Officer Needs Assistance will be screened at the Tampa Bay Underground Film Festival on Saturday December 5th, 2015 at 6pm. The location for the screening is at the Britton 8 Theater 3938 S Dale Mabry Hwy, Tampa, FL, Tampa, FL 33611 – Tickets are $6.00
Synopsis: Law Enforcement and PTSD: A Deadly Combination. While we expect many of our returning war veterans to experience PTSD, we generally have little awareness of, and offer almost no treatment for, our police force here at home. This lack of recognition and treatment has destroyed careers and families. This powerful documentary explores the darker side of law enforcement as it tells the stories of police officers and their families who are now suffering the mental anguish of the careers they chose, which has led some to suicide.
My name is Deborah Louise Ortiz and I am the producer and director of the film. I am also the wife of a retired and highly decorated New York State trooper and a federal agent for the DEA drug enforcement task force. When my husband retired from his twenty-two year law enforcement career, all of our dreams of a happy retirement turned into our worst nightmares. Little did we know that his years on the job would leave him with the demons he still battles. In an attempt to find help and get answers I discovered that PTSD is a huge problem for First Responders and this inspired me to make this film.
I want to acknowledge the brave men and women who shared their stories for the film: Robert Cubby, Rick and Becky Neeley, Warren Grant, Kirti Haaka. Gordon Smith, Nathan Schlitz, Luke Jensen, Mike Pool, Dr. John Violanti and Ron Clark. The film is dedicated to the brave men and woman who died by their own hand due to work related PTSD.
It is my hope that this film will reach First Responders and families that are struggling in silence as it helps educate the public on what are first responders deal with. The film will get the conversation started as we look for solutions in changing the way mental health is addressed within the departments.
Film trailer link: https://vimeo.com/140940776
Producers: Deborah Louise Ortiz, Lisa Edwards, Tyler Marino
What people are saying:
“Code 9: Officer Needs Assistance is one of the most thought provoking, reality based depictions of what our law enforcement Warriors experience that I have ever seen. Thank you Deborah and your entire team for stepping up to the plate and truthfully discussing this vital topic. You are shedding light where there has been darkness for so many!!
Susan Lewis Simons, M.S., B.C.E.T.S., D.A.A.E.T.S. Founder/President Under the Shield Foundation
Code 9 is a groundbreaking film that explores the causes of PTSD in law enforcement, the disastrous results, and looks at the options by which it can be prevented. Greatly needed, this documentary is a “must see” for all officers, supervisors and administrators in police work.
Andy O’Hara, Badge of Life
Code 9 is a powerfully moving awareness documentary that conveys the stories of PTSD-injured officers. The Code 9 movie is a must see and a moral motivator for all leaders, public administrators, police chiefs, fire chiefs, and elected officials to ensure that the right policies, programs, and services are in place to help first responders prevent and heal from post-traumatic stress.
Tony Lo Giudice – United Mesa Firefighters
This documentary, Code 9, goes where no one has gone in film before–into the depths of post traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and the true threat it presents to law enforcement. Fifteen to eighteen percent of police officers suffer from PTSD. They need to see this film as do the many officers–and managers–who run the risk of incurring it. I could not recommend this film more highly as a means of understanding this deadly mental health issue.
–Ron Clark, Badge of Life