October 10, 2020             Gatineau, Quebec              Employment and Social Development Canada

Today, the Minister of Labour, Filomena Tassi, issued the following statement regarding World Mental Health Day:

“On World Mental Health Day, we are putting the spotlight on protecting and supporting mental health in the workplace. Our government recognizes the mental health and well-being of Canadian workers must be prioritized. We are working together with unions, workers, employers and experts to create psychologically healthy and safe workplaces.

Canada is facing an unprecedented situation with the COVID-19 pandemic. No part of our society has been left untouched by this pandemic. Different sectors of work are experiencing unforeseen disruptions that affect everyone—employers, workers, their families and all of our communities. The Government has taken a number of important steps to protect and support Canadians experiencing stress and anxiety due to COVID-19, including the launch of Wellness Together Canada, an online portal that provides access to a virtual network of psychosocial supports.

We are also working with our partners and stakeholders to support workers’ mental health by promoting and sharing credible information and resources during this time of crisis. These include free e-courses offered by the Canadian Centre for Occupational Health and Safety, and a Resource Hub hosted by the Mental Health Commission of Canada (MHCC) which provides credible information and resources about mental health and wellness.

Supporting the mental health of Canadian workers is of critical importance. We have made changes to the Canada Labour Code and created new regulations to better protect Canadian workers, including the most vulnerable, from harmful behaviours in the workplace. The new regulations to prevent workplace harassment and violence will come into force in January 2021. We will continue to work to include mental health as a key element of occupational health and safety under the Canada Labour Code.

Workers who feel secure and supported in the workplace are better able to use their talents and reach their full potential at work, at home and in our communities. As we continue to address and respond to the impacts of the pandemic, we are working with our partners and stakeholders to take the steps needed to create healthy and safe workplaces for everyone.”

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