McLeod reports on mental health in workplace

Conservative government released hands-on, how-to-do guide

We have all read about the increase of mental-health issues in the workplace, with reports of nearly one-quarter of the country’s working population currently affected by mental-health problems or illnesses leading to absenteeism and turnovers, says Kamloops-Thompson-Cariboo MP Cathy McLeod.

According to the Mental Health Commission of Canada, workplace mental health has a $51-billion economic impact on businesses across Canada, and in the next 30 years, it is estimated to reach $198 billion in current dollars, she adds.

“At the beginning of 2014, the minister of Labour asked me to investigate this critical issue and conduct consultations across Canada, meeting with academics, employers, employee groups, mental health agencies, and most importantly, to analyze the federal government funded implementation of the Mental Health Commission of Canada’s Mental Health in the Workplace Standard.”

While conducting these consultations, McLeod says it became apparent businesses and groups across Canada are increasingly more invested in the mental well-being of their employees; however, many are having challenges with implementing “the standard”.

Many stakeholders suggested a “how-to guide” would be most welcome, she adds.

Last week, McLeod notes, the Mental Health Commission acted on this key recommendation by launching a hands-on, easy to use handbook, entitled Assembling the Pieces: An Implementation Guide to the National Standard for Psychological Health and Safety in the Workplace.

“I would encourage all employers to review this voluntary set of guidelines, tools and resources to better help the psychological health and economic well-being of their workplaces.

“Upon the completion of my report and recommendations to the minister, I am confident our government will continue to focus on this critical issue for Canadians.”