London, U.K. - Canadian leadership on workplace mental health took centre stage at the inaugural European Business Leadership Forum Target the Impact of Depression in the Workplace.

Louise Bradley, President and CEO of the MHCC, spoke to an assembly of European business leaders and mental health experts about Canada’s renowned National Standard for Psychological Health and Safety in the Workplace (the Standard).

London, U.K. - Canadian leadership on workplace mental health took centre stage at the inaugural European Business Leadership Forum Target the Impact of Depression in the Workplace.

Louise Bradley, President and CEO of the MHCC, spoke to an assembly of European business leaders and mental health experts about Canada’s renowned National Standard for Psychological Health and Safety in the Workplace (the Standard).

The [Workplace] Standard is the first of its kind in the world. It is a voluntary set of guidelines, tools and resources focused on promoting employees’ psychological health and preventing psychological harm due to workplace factors.

“For far too long, employers have been content to safeguard the physical health of their employees – without giving much thought to their mental well-being,” said Ms. Bradley. “The [workplace] Standard can be adopted regardless of where you work: in an office, as a first-responder, in a power plant.”

The Standard is being applied across various sectors, from telecommunications and finance, to education and police services.

The Mental Health Commission of Canada (MHCC) collaborated with the Canadian Standards Association (CSA) Group and the Bureau de normalisation du Québec (BNQ) to launch the Workplace Standard in January 2013.

The Mental Health Commission of Canada is now working with 42 employers, large and small, across Canada in a series of case studies to identify challenges, barriers and best practices, as well as the cost and impact of implementing the Standard.

“These case studies are a model of public-private collaboration as the funding comes from both government and our committed private sector partners,” said Ms. Bradley.

Ms. Bradley concluded her remarks by saying, “Any roadmap towards a brighter future for mental health must acknowledge the crucial role the workplace has to play.”

QUICK FACTS: Mental Health in Canadian Workplaces

  • 500,000: approximate number of people who will not go to work because of mental illness in any given week
  • $51 Billion: annual cost to the economy in health and social services, income support, and lost productivity
  • 70% of employees have some degree of concern with psychological health and safety in their workplace
  • 14% of employees don’t think that their workplace is psychologically healthy and safe
  • 30% of disability claims and 70% of disability costs are attributed to mental health related situations

ABOUT THE MENTAL HEALTH COMMISSION OF CANADA
The Mental Health Commission of Canada is a catalyst for change. We are collaborating with hundreds of partners to change the attitudes of Canadians toward mental health problems and to improve services and support. Our goal is to help people who live with mental health problems and illnesses lead meaningful and productive lives. Together we create change. The Mental Health Commission of Canada is funded by Health Canada.
www.mentalhealthcommission.ca

Media Contact:
Patti Robson, Director of Public Affairs
Mental Health Commission of Canada
Office: 613-683- 3742
Mobile: 613-282-1573
probson@mentalhealthcommission.ca

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The views represented herein solely represent the views of the Mental Health Commission of Canada.
Production of this document is made possible through a financial contribution from Health Canada.