Today is January 29, and social media is filled with discussions and posts seeking to raise awareness about mental health issues and initiatives. It is a good time to reflect on the state of mental health support within the Canadian government and public service.
Forums for discussing mental health can play an important role in de-stigmatizing issues, and we need to ensure structures are put in place to provide everyone with access to proper support and care, including in the workplace. Indeed, the Mental Health Commission of Canada recently published a study showing that nearly 9 in 10 Canadians want increased funding for mental health. Beyond access to care, workplace culture also needs to foster mental well-being and not hinder it.
It is no secret that, as law enforcement officers and public servants, our members are sometimes confronted with difficult, stressful situations as part of their daily work. Within CBSA, past employee surveys have shown a high level of dissatisfaction due to a psychologically unhealthy workplace. As a union, we’ve been vocal about the need for CBSA to address the many problems that plague the Agency when it comes to abuse of authority and harassment by managers.
You are not alone
When facing a difficult situation at work or at home, remember that you are not alone. People around you can be a source of support, and your union is there to assist you and help you find the resources you need. As CBSA employees, you can also contact Homewood Health for confidential assistance – be it for advice, counselling or treatment (for more information about Homewood Health and other resources, see our Mental Health page).
Just like physical well-being, mental health matters, in any setting.