Is your business looking to improve its psychological safety? If you’re not sure where to begin, it may seem difficult or overwhelming. So where do you start?
WSPS' Mental Harm Prevention Roadmap gives employers the framework they need to create a psychologically healthy workplace. It’s a step-by-step guide on how to meet the requirements outlined in CSA-Z1003-13 -Psychological Health and Safety in the Workplace, which was introduced in 2013. The goal of the Mental Harm Prevention Roadmap is to help employers reduce the risk of mental harm at work.
Kristy Cork, Specialized Consultant for Healthy Workplaces with WSPS, and Katie Bobra, Health and Safety Consultant with WSPS, explain that while the CSA Standard gave employers the specifics on what was expected of them in terms of protecting employees from mental harm, many employers didn’t know where to start. "The CSA Standard outlines what is required by employers when it comes to addressing psychological safety in the workplace. The Mental Harm Prevention Roadmap gives them a strategy on how to do it," says Katie. "It gives them something tangible to follow based on their own readiness, size, and available resources."
One of the first things you’ll see when you visit the site is a definition of psychological safety and how it differs from mental health, which is an important concept to understand as you work towards a mentally safe and healthy workplace. "Mental health is what we carry with us all the time. It's about how well we deal with various stressors. You can be living with positive mental health or poor mental health," says Kristy. "Psychological safety is when you look at the factors that can harm our mental health. We want to reduce those factors and move from a culture of carelessness to one of carefulness in the workplace."
It helps to think of these concepts in terms of physical safety. We're used to dealing with hazards that may harm us physically, such as working at heights or near heavy machinery. Controls are put in place to protect employees from these types of physical health hazards. Similarly, we need controls in place to protect employees from mental health hazards. "An example of a mental health hazard could be not respecting an employee's personal time. The Right To Disconnect legislation that was recently put in place is a good control to reduce the risk of this hazard," says Kristy.
How to build your plan
- Create an account and select a Champion. Go to Roadmap to get started. Identify someone internal to be a Champion who can facilitate within the organization. You can involve the JHSC as well, to integrate psychological safety into the organization’s overall health and safety management system.
- Assess your organization's current state. Use the tool on the site to determine where your organization is on its journey toward a mentally healthy workplace. These results indicate which areas to prioritize when you begin to build your roadmap.
- Build your roadmap. The site breaks down eight building blocks that represent an area of focus to help you build your roadmap. Based on the results from your assessment, the site recommends which building blocks your organization should start with.
- Monitor your results. Using the dashboard, track your results and evaluate the effectiveness of the controls your organization has put in place. If you find that your organization has made progress on its journey toward a mentally healthy workplace, move on to the next building block.
How WSPS can help
Visit the WSPS Mental Harm Prevention Roadmap to start building your roadmap.
Connect with a Workplace Mental Health Consultants consultant to find out more.
- Psychological Health and Safety for Workers (eCourse, 1.5h)
- Workplace Mental Health: Raising Awareness (eCourse, 1h)
- Leading for Psychological Safety in Challenging Times (in-person, 1 day)
- Sample Policy: Right to Disconnect
- Psychological Safety: A Roadmap
- Mental Health & Employee Wellbeing Resource Stream