Quebec workers more reluctant than other Canadians to discuss mental health in the workplace, says survey

MONTREAL, Nov. 17, 2011 /CNW/ - Fewer Quebec workers have experienced a mental health-related illness than Canadian workers as a whole, but are less comfortable sharing their mental health issue with colleagues. These are some of the findings in a Conference Board of Canada survey released last week.

According to the survey, 29% of Quebec workers have experienced a mental health-related illness, compared to 32% for Canada, but while 28% of Canadians are comfortable sharing their mental health issue with colleagues, in Quebec the figure is  only 21%.

"These findings show the need for increased education and communication to combat the stigma, misinformation and apprehension surrounding mental health in the workplace," says Claudine Ducharme, Director, Health Solutions Consulting Services for Morneau Shepell.

"Employers must create a psychologically safe and healthy workplace. A good place to start is with a strong, demonstrated and visible commitment by senior management that can identify problems, make the assessment, and control psychological hazards and risks."

Other survey findings are as follows:

  • 51% of Quebec respondents report that their organization offers supportive programs, services or benefits that address their mental health needs, compared to 58% nationally;

  • 18% of Quebec respondents say they received workplace information about mental health in the past year, compared to 22% nationally;

  • 57% of Quebec respondents report that managers are held accountable for addressing workplace issues that negatively affect the mental well-being of their employees, compared to 51% nationally.

The survey, called Building Mentally Healthy Workplaces: Perspectives of Canadian Workers and Front-Line Managers, looked at what organizations can do to create conditions in which employees experiencing mental health issues can work more productively. The survey included 233 respondents from Quebec.

Findings Reveal Quebecers' Views on Mental Health Differs From Rest of Canadians

Morneau Shepell, which was a sponsor of the Conference Board survey, is the leading provider of Employee Assistance Program (EAP) services in Quebec and across Canada. In September, the company broadened its services to the Quebec market with the acquisition of Quebec-based Jacques Lamarre & Associates. With the acquisition, Morneau Shepell was able to offer over 900 Quebec clients, and more than 1.4 million employees and their families in the province, a broad portfolio of EAP solutions to complement its existing suite of EAP counselling, work/life and child-focused services.
The Conference Board of Canada's findings in Building Mentally Healthy Workplaces: Perspectives of Workers and Front-Line Managers in Quebec, is available at http://www.conferenceboard.ca/documents.aspx?did=4467

Morneau Shepell Ltd.

Morneau Shepell is the largest Canadian-based firm offering industry-leading benefits and pension consulting, outsourcing, as well as health and productivity solutions. The company works with clients to develop innovative solutions that integrate with their business strategies to achieve results. Through Benefits and Health Solutions Consulting, Pension Consulting, Health Management, Administration Solutions and Shepell•fgi's Employee Assistance Program, Morneau Shepell helps clients reduce costs, increase employee productivity, and improve their competitive positions by supporting their employees' financial security, health and well-being.

Established in 1962, Morneau Shepell serves over 8,000 clients, ranging from small businesses to some of the largest corporations and associations in North America. With approximately 2,500 employees in offices across North America, we provide services to organizations across Canada, in the United States and around the globe. www.morneaushepell.com

SOURCE Morneau Shepell Ltd.

For further information:

Danielle Brochu
514 392-7862
dbrochu@morneaushepell.com

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