Toronto Police Services Board a Leader in Offering Mental Health Supports to our Members
Canadian Mental Health Association’s Mental Health Week is an opportunity to highlight the importance of mental health wellness in the policing workplace
Canadian Mental Health Association (CMHA)’s Mental Health Week, which runs from May 6-12, is an opportunity to place a spotlight on mental health in the workplace. Policing is a unique and extremely intense career, with our Service Members, both uniform and civilian, regularly experiencing and witnessing situations involving trauma and tragedy. This can often manifest in Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder, Operational Stress Injuries, as well as depression and anxiety – mental health conditions that have a tremendous impact on the lives of the Members they touch, as well as the lives of their loved ones.
The Board recognizes that in order to fully and meaningfully support our Members, we need to give them comprehensive and ongoing psychological assistance, and most importantly, the tools and resources they need to most effectively deal with these significant workplace and personal challenges.
In March of this year, the Toronto Police Services Board reached bargaining agreements with the Toronto Police Association, which represents all non-senior uniform and civilian staff. One of the most notable aspects of the new agreements was an increase in psychological and counselling services to an annual cap of $5000 per person, which places the Toronto Police Service among the top Fortune 500 companies in the provision of these benefits.
We are setting the bar for police services across the country, establishing the Toronto Police Service as best in class in an area of particular value and importance.
This is a concrete demonstration of the Board’s commitment to providing progressive and meaningful support to our Members, ensuring that, as an employer, we are constantly focused on fostering a psychologically healthy and compassionate workplace.
Uppala Chandrasekera, Board Member and Director of Public Policy at the Canadian Mental Health Association Ontario, said that “the Board’s leadership in this area demonstrates the priority we place on building and strengthening the essential infrastructure our Members can rely on as they cope with the considerable stress they encounter every day. Providing access to a high level of mental health services is vital to creating conditions for our Members’ mental well-being.”
As we celebrate CMHA’s Mental Health Week, joining employers across Canada in this important initiative, we continue to enhance the effective and caring support we provide to our Members.