#MentalHealthAwareness week in #Canada is from September 30th to October 7th 2018. Remember to always be gentle with people you meet. Their outsides may not match their insides.Why does workplace mental health matter? Mental health is an issue that impacts every workplace in Canada. The workplace can contribute positively or negatively to a person’s mental health. Employers and employees both benefit from a psychologically healthy workplace:
- Better employee
- retention and recruitment
Employees with a healthy psychological/mental health awareness & balance contribute to reducing:
- health costs
- medical leave/disability
- workplace injuries
So what can employers do to help?As an employer, there are many ways in which you can help create a psychologically healthy and safe workplace. Building a supportive work environment that promotes mental well-being has benefits for everyone and keeps your workforce strong and competitive.Top 8 best practices:
- Encourage employee participation and decision-making
- Clearly define employees' duties and responsibilities
- Promote work-life balance
- Encourage and model respectful behaviours
- Manage workloads
- Provide training and learning opportunities
- Have conflict resolution practices in place
- Recognize employees' contributions effectively
Employers should assess their workplace for hazards, whether physical or psychological, then develop a plan to address and mitigate those hazards. As with other health and safety issues, employers must always work with their workplace HR/policy, health and safety committee or health and safety representative when developing policies or programs that address mental health in the workplace.Hazard Prevention PragramsA "hazard prevention program" is a workplace-specific program designed to prevent work-related injuries and diseases. These programs are prepared in response to the hazards at a particular workplace. The Canadian Federal Hazard Prevention Program Regulations were developed in close consultation with employer and employee representatives.Under these regulations, employers are required to update or create their own hazard prevention programs. These programs will take into account the size of the company or organization and the nature of its activities. The program makes available the necessary information tools and resources to help employers set up and implement their own prevention programs adapted to each workplace.Online resources available to employers (among many other resources), include:
- The Government of Canada's Hazard Prevention Program Guide,
- The Canadian Centre for Occupational Health and Safety (CCOHS) developed Healthy Minds@Work, a hub of tools and resources to support workplaces in their efforts to address psychological health and safety in the workplace.
- The Mental Health Commission of Canada’s National Standard of Canada for Psychological Health and Safety in the Workplace (the Standard)
- Mental Health First Aid, developed by the Mental Health Commission of Canada, aims to improve mental health literacy and provide the skills and knowledge to help people better manage potential or developing mental health problems in themselves, a family member, a friend or a colleague.
- Ontario Human Rights Commission (OHRC) Human Rights and Mental Health Factsheet
- Ontario WSIB provided Chronic Mental Stress resources.
- Canadian Centre for Occupational Health and Safety (CCOHS) develpoed & maintained StressAssess website for Occupational Health Clinics for Ontario workers.
For assistance with this and other HR topics, please review resources available in the Beneplan HR Toolkit section, accessed via your Beneplan client login, at our website, or call the Beneplan provided, complimentary HR Consultant at 1 800 387 1670 x 268.Alternatively, speak with Beneplan to set up a call with us.