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Moving to Action – Mental Harm Prevention Roadmap Primer

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Moving to Action Implementing Workplace Safety & Prevention Services' Mental Harm Prevention Roadmap 15 But do not stop with policies. At-risk employees may not self-advocate. It is important to consider how to support these employees to reduce risk of victimization over an extended period. Employers should identify what creates a psychologically safe culture and what does not. An environment that fosters empowerment can lead to a more caring culture. This includes encouraging employees to self-report when their workload is too much or if an incident occurs. 25 By understanding how informal and formal behavioural cues influence workplace culture, an employer can better determine which actions are needed to have a positive impact on employees' psychological health and safety. 26 Overcoming barriers • Be open to different perspectives to foster inclusive culture. • Don't confuse activity (e.g., delivering a policy or program) as a culture driver on its own. Focus on enabling desired behaviours from all employees and leaders. 25 Howatt, Vanbuskirk, and Adams, Facilitating a Safe and Respectful Workplace. 26 Duhigg, "What Google Learned From Its Quest to Build the Perfect Team." 27 Wright, "Coping with Loneliness at Work"; Rogers, Polonijo, and Carpiano, "Getting By With a Little Help." 28 Glasser, Choice Theory. 29 Clark, "Stage 1: Inclusion Safety." Building Block 6: Connections Connections—Define how to assist employees with connecting to one another. This reduces risks of perceived isolation and loneliness. It also creates peer support systems. The goal is to bring employees together to support building safe communities where all feel included. Why is this building block important? Employees spend a significant amount of time at work and the quality of their work relationships can influence their mental health. There is a correlation between employees who perceive social isolation and poorer mental health. 27 Every person has basic human needs to be socially accepted and feel they fit in. 28 The workplace can provide employees with the opportunity to build healthy relationships and receive peer support in times of need. The workplace can also be a source of harmful relationships and isolation barriers, including discrimination and poor workstation design. 29

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