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"There is no clear correlation that knowing how to take care of oneself

and actually caring for oneself are related"

Jacobson (2006) J Workplace Behav Health

Psychological Health & Safety (PH&S) in the OT Workplace?

WHY is this a concern?

Across ALL healthcare providers in Canada- OTs rank 7th highest in stress. (Wilkins 2007 Health Reports 18, 116-134)  






Persistent stress at work is wrong for so many reasons. Getting 'bent out of shape' might be OK at the gym- But not in the workplace.  


"A psychologically healthy and safe workplace is one that promotes employees’ psychological well-being and actively works to prevent harm to employee psychological health due to negligent, reckless or intentional acts.


Psychological health comprises our ability to think, feel and behave in a manner that enables us to perform effectively in our work environments, our personal lives, and in society at large.

let's unpack the suitcase- WHAT exactly is PH&S in the workplace?


Psychological safety is different - it deals with the risk of injury to psychological well-being that an employee might experience. Improving the psychological safety of a work setting involves taking precautions to avert injury or danger to employee psychological health.


It is important to note that psychological health problems occur on a spectrum, from mild psychological difficulties on one end to severe psychological disorders on the other. The most common psychological health problems in the workplace are anxiety and depression. These conditions account for a large proportion of the negative impacts on employees and employers. 

While psychological health and psychological safety are deserving of equal protection, it is important to note that from a strategic perspective, ensuring safety (in the sense of preventing psychological harm) is a prerequisite to the promotion of health."

(Guarding Minds


According to the Guarding Minds organzation it is important to identify not only those factors that are acting as supports for mental health but also those that present risks to mental health with the goal of strengthening the former and abating the latter.


Guarding Minds stresses that the following 3 basic human needs at work must be identified and supported prevent risks to mental health:

  1. Dignity and respect for the person (serving basic needs for the sense of self-worth and self-esteem)

  2. Security, integrity and autonomy of the person (serving the need to feel safe both physically and psychologically)

  3. Organizational justice (serving the need to feel that one belongs to a community in which there is respect for due process and fair procedures)

       Click here for a poster to share in your workplace

Alberta Human Rights Act and other legislation
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