Cheat Sheet: Canadian Mental Health Resources for Employers
By Cindy Danielson
September 26, 2022
October is a busy month to raise Mental Health Awareness in Canada so we consolidated this Cheat Sheet with links to FREE or low-cost resources for Employers and Advisors - just download, brand, tailor & share with clients.
Mental Illness Awareness Week is October 2-8, 2022: an annual national public education campaign designed to help open the eyes of Canadians to the reality of mental illness. The week was established by the Canadian Psychiatric Association, and is now coordinated by the Canadian Alliance on Mental Illness and Mental Health (CAMIMH) in cooperation with all its member organizations and many other supporters across Canada.
World Mental Health Day 2022 is October 10, 2022 to raise awareness and make mental health and well-being for all a global priority. #WorldMentalHealthDay
The Business Impact of Mental Health
Mental illness and substance use disorders impact your business and show up as employee absences and disability claims, disengagement, negative attitudes and contribute to increasing benefits costs directly hitting the pocketbook.
According to the Centre for Addiction and Mental Health (CAMH) in any given year, 1 in 5 Canadians experiences a mental illness. In fact, young people aged 15 to 24 are more likely to experience mental illness and/or substance use disorders than any other age group. As our workforce ages and more young people fill these roles, you may see an increase in employee issues and visits to your management and Human Resources team. Knowing how to respond empathetically and knowledgeably can make a big difference to your employee’s lives.
As an employer, it’s a good idea to provide mental health resources that employees can refer to if/when they need to. It’s best to be proactive and communicate with your staff before a crisis.
Employee & Family Assistance Programs
An Employee & Family Assistance Program (EFAP) can be an excellent and affordable way for employers to support employees, and their families, at no additional cost to them. We partner with HumanaCare EFAP which provides counseling services, lifestyle and wellness support services, and second opinion services. But, there are many Canadian EFAP providers so be sure to speak with your Advisor to learn more.
The following resources are FREE or low-cost options to consider as part of your Toolkit:
CCOHS was established in 1978 by the Canadian Centre for Occupational Health and Safety Act, which was passed by unanimous vote in the Canadian Parliament. CCOHS promotes the total well-being – physical, psychosocial and mental health – of working Canadians by providing information, training, education, management systems and solutions that support health, safety and wellness programs.
The Centre for Addiction and Mental Health (CAMH) is Canada's largest mental health teaching hospital and one of the world's leading research centres in its field. CAMH is fully affiliated with the University of Toronto and is a Pan American Health Organization/World Health Organization Collaborating Centre.
With a dedicated staff of more than 3,000 physicians, clinicians, researchers, educators and support staff, CAMH offers outstanding clinical care to more than 34,000 patients each year. The organization conducts groundbreaking research, provides expert training to health care professionals and scientists, develops innovative health promotion and prevention strategies, and advocates on public policy issues at all levels of government. And through our Foundation, we're working to raise tens of millions of additional dollars to fund new programs and research and augment services.
The Conference Board of Canada provides ongoing research in mental health and wellness and has continued to focus on understanding the impacts of the pandemic on families, employers, employees, work-life balance, and mental stress.
The Mental Health Commission of Canada (MHCC) leads the development and dissemination of innovative programs and tools to support the mental health and wellness of Canadians. Through its unique mandate from the Government of Canada, the MHCC supports federal, provincial, and territorial governments as well as organizations in the implementation of sound public policy.
The Mood Disorders Society of Canada (MDSC) has evolved to become one of Canada’s best-connected mental health Non-Governmental Organizations (NGO) with a demonstrated track record for forging and maintaining meaningful and sustained partnerships with the public, private and non-profit sectors throughout Canada.
Wellness Together Canada was created in response to an unprecedented rise in mental health and substance use concerns due to the COVID-19 pandemic, with funding from the Government of Canada. As a country, we are facing challenges at a scale we’ve never seen before, from social isolation and financial insecurity to substance use concerns and racial inequality. Wellness Together Canada is brought to you by Kids Help Phone, Government of Canada, Stepped Care Solutions and Homewood Health.
Their Resources page provides access to 24/7 youth and adult crisis and counseling support for people in Canada and Canadians living abroad and tips for coping with stress, overwhelm and loss.
Wellness Works Canada is a non-profit workplace health and performance association. They support workplace health practitioners and employers to build healthy, high performing work cultures. They empower and guide members with simple, evidence-informed, cost-effective education, resources, consulting and accreditation. They also advocate for the profound impact well-being has on performance. Cost-effective partner memberships and certifications are available for students, practitioners, providers, and employers.
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