To help organizations in Canada create awareness and recognize the importance of psychological health and safety in the workplace, the Canadian Centre for Occupational Health and Safety (CCOHS) has developed a free online course.
Workplaces have traditionally focused on protecting employees from physical harm, but there is strong scientific evidence that certain features of the workplace—demoralization, depressed mood, anxiety, burnout, etc.—can affect employees’ mental health. In turn, this increases the likelihood of developing or worsening a mental disorder.
Employers are legally obligated to protect the psychological well-being of their workers, many of whom are experiencing additional impacts from the pandemic.
According to CCHOS, psychological health problems can range widely, from mild psychological difficulties such as low mood, sleep difficulties, or excessive worry to severe psychological disorders such as schizophrenia, bipolar disorder, or severe depression. Because milder psychological health problems are far more common in the workplace, they account for a larger percentage of the negative impacts on employees and employers.
The online tool, Psychological Health and Safety Awareness, offers an introduction to workplace mental health including an overview of the six categories of psychosocial factors and how they impact the mental health of individuals and groups.
Participants will develop an understanding of why workplace mental health is important and the roles and responsibilities of workers and managers in creating a psychologically healthy and safe environment.
Photo by Anna Shvets