Nearly 60 per cent of Canadians say their mental health has been negatively affected by COVID-19, according to a recent poll. A survey by the Sun Life insurance and financial services company suggests 45 per cent of all Canadians feel less financially secure since the pandemic began and they link financial stress to poor mental health.
Tools offered to help
Sun Life and leading Canadian mental health provider, the Centre for Addiction and Mental Health (CAMH) are urging companies to invest in mental health support and to make mental health a priority. Executives can download a Workplace Mental Health Playbook to get recommendations on creating healthier workplaces that are based on research.
Executives are also invited to attend a webinar on November 30, 2020 and a Business Leaders Mental Health Summit in 2021.
Examples of help for employees
Sun Life has put its money where its mouth is: to support its own employees it has taken several steps. It has doubled the number of personal emergency days from five to 10, it has enabled flexible work schedules, mandated lunch hours and Fridays be free of meetings and it has provided employees access to its team of in-house psychologists through regular webinars.
‘No health without mental health’
Raising awareness about mental health issues has become a priority in Canada in recent years. Among the initiatives, October 4 to 10, 2020 has been declared Mental Illness Awareness Week. The goal is to encourage Canadians to learn about mental illness and to share their experiences with it. The theme this year is “There is no health without mental health.”