COVID-19 update for correctional employees: May 14, 2021
This content is a message to Correctional Service Canada (CSC) staff from CSC's Commissioner.
I was the Deputy Co-Chair at the Association of Professional Executives (APEX) of the Public Service of Canada leadership summit this past week, and had the opportunity to moderate a session with the Honourable Frank McKenna, former Premier of New Brunswick. What he said really resonated with me:
- be proud of what you do
- hard work, optimism and persistence pay off
- people are capable of extraordinary accomplishments, and
- success is enjoyed when it is shared as a team
I think these points really capture how well Correctional Service Canada (CSC) managed and succeeded this past year. I know that it has been the result of incredible teamwork. The challenges you faced in your daily routines and changing work environment was like sailing in uncharted waters. Through your:
- outstanding hard work
- persistence, and
you have made, and continue to make, a huge difference in the lives of the people in our care and the safety of our communities. I think that what CSC has accomplished this year is a reflection of the pride you take in what you do, thank you.
International Day of Families
Last weekend we celebrated mothers. Tomorrow, Saturday, May 15, we celebrate families on the International Day of Families. This day highlights the importance of traditional and non-traditional families. Families are the heart and the foundation of our society. Take time to appreciate your family members and the importance they play in your own life and as part of our communities. One thing the COVID-19 pandemic has highlighted is how important our family is to us. This year’s theme is:
I encourage you to reach out, whether:
- in person
- by video, or
- by phone
and tell your family members how much they mean.
For those in our care and custody, CSC’s research shows that there is a connection between positive family relationships and lower rates of recidivism. This is at the core of the Canadian Families and Corrections Network (CFCN), which works to:
build stronger and safer communities by assisting families affected by:
- criminal behavior
- incarceration, and
During the pandemic, CSC has worked with CFCN to bring new initiatives to all of our institutions. Take a moment to learn more about their contributions and join CSC in helping CFCN to promote their valued work with offenders and their families.
Thank you nurses
This week is National Nursing Week. We are all grateful for the amazing nurses across the country who have been on the frontlines providing extraordinary health care during these extraordinary times. You can read:
- Prime Minister Trudeau’s statement, which really summed up our collective gratitude in thanking nurses for their selfless care and compassion
Vaccines administered to offenders
In January 2021, CSC began offering vaccinations to older and vulnerable inmates with the Moderna vaccine as an additional public health measure to help protect individuals from the negative effects of the coronavirus. In April, CSC offered additional vaccination clinics to the remaining offender population. On May 6, CSC began publicly posting a chart on its website that:
CSC will continue to provide further updates to this table as more offenders are vaccinated.
Congratulations to two of CSC's Health Services executives who were recognized on May 12 for their stellar work by the APEX of the Public Service of Canada:
- Jennifer Wheatley, Assistant Commissioner, Health Services:
- received the Partnership Award for building partnerships with federal, provincial and local public health authorities across the country during the COVID-19 pandemic
- Henry de Souza, Director General, Clinical Services and Public Health:
- received the Innovation Award for his work over the last 13 years, transforming the health-care system for inmates
These well-deserved awards speak volumes about their excellent contributions to the health of CSC staff and inmates.
2020 Public Employee Service Survey results
The departmental results for the 2020 Public Service Employee Survey (PSES) are now available. Thanks again to the 8,650 employees who completed the survey! Your opinion is essential in helping CSC identify where improvement is needed. As I explained in my message yesterday, I am pleased to see that CSC’s results have improved in most of the key areas. The results are taken seriously and there is still work to be done. Discussions with members of the executive committee are taking place and CSC will work together to address areas of concern. Once again, thank you for your participation in the survey. Your opinion, our future!
National Survey of Women Employees reminder
I would like to thank all the employees who completed the 2021 National Survey of Women Employees. If you have not yet had a chance to participate in the survey, I would like to remind you that you have a little more than a week (until May 26) to do so. This survey is an initiative of the National Working Group for Women and addresses key issues such as:
- work-life balance
- work environment
- professional development. and
- promotion of women at CSC
The results will help the group achieve its goal of addressing issues facing women and ensuring that CSC is a:
- respectful, and
- inclusive workplace for all staff
Speak up and be the change! If you can no longer find the survey invitation email, please contact the Quorus Consulting Group at:
Workplace climate report
Everyone deserves to work in a healthy environment and we each have a part to play in this. The organization values personal and professional integrity, and the commitment of all staff to create a healthy and respectful work culture. CSC’s second Workplace Climate and Employee Well-Being Annual Report is now available on the Hub.
The annual report provides an analytical approach for assessing our challenges and our progress regarding wellness. Having a performance measurement framework is essential to help CSC:
- evaluate our progress
- identify emerging:
- challenges, and
- adjust our practices, and
- demonstrate transparency in reporting on progress in addressing the psychological risk factors at work
The report recognizes that mental health is a priority, and that:
- intimidation, and
are not acceptable under any circumstances.
It is assisting us in monitoring our progress as an organization and is a reflection of what CSC has achieved so far. I encourage you all to read it and thank you for your continued efforts to make CSC a healthy and respectful place to work.
International Day Against Homophobia, Transphobia and Biphobia
May 17 is the International Day Against Homophobia, Transphobia and Biphobia, which raises awareness of the discrimination and violence experienced by:
- lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer, and two-spirit communities, and
- people with diverse sexual orientations and gender
On Monday, May 17, a virtual panel discussion will be held from 1:30 pm to 3:00 pm (ET) that focuses on safe, sensitive, and effective:
- Psychological and Wellness Support Services for LGBTQ2+ Communities for public service employees
You are welcome to register and attend the event to learn more about these important employee support resources.
CSC does not allow any form of violence and discrimination. It is important that we continually work together to ensure our workplace is inclusive, safe and respectful for everyone, regardless of:
- gender identity
- gender expression, or
In closing, I wanted to express my appreciation for your continued dedication and cooperation in following health habits, such as:
- physical distancing
- cleaning your hands, and
- wearing a mask
Thank you, as well, for saying yes when the opportunity to get the vaccine is available to you. Combined, these measures will help you and your family stay healthy. Together we are making a difference in limiting the spread of COVID-19.
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