Every year, one in five Canadians will suffer from a mental health problem or illness. That’s about 7 million of us. Despite how common it is, mental illness continues to be met with widespread stigma.
With more than 500,000 Canadians missing work each week due to a mental health problem or illness, and costing the economy more than 51 billion dollars per year, no workplace is immune from these risks and we cannot afford to limit our definition of occupational health and safety to only the physical.
Business plays a key role in fostering a positive work environment that emphasizes the importance of work-life balance.
We have partnered with the Mental Health Commission of Canada (MHCC) to engage the chamber network in a public awareness campaign to educate employers on the importance of mentally healthy workplaces and to encourage them to adopt the National Standards for Psychological Health and Safety in the Workplace.
As part of this campaign, we will initiate 338 Conversations on Mental Health in the Workplace. 338 Conversations will launch in late October on Parliament Hill where all MPs will be provided with toolkits for engaging their local chambers and their member businesses in conversations on the issue.
On July 18, at 1:30 p.m. EDT, we, in collaboration with the MHCC, are holding a webinar for our chamber members to brief you on the importance of mentally healthy workplaces and to encourage your support and participation in our initiatives.
• Jackie King, Chief Operating Office, Canadian Chamber of Commerce
• Sapna Mahajan, Director, Mental Health Prevention and Promotion – Workplace Initiatives, Mental Health Commission of Canada