July 30: Twitter Update from the Deputy Minister Jody Thomas

August 3, 2021 – Defence Stories

Friday update: Many Defence Team members likely have questions about fall and what the end of the pandemic will mean for the option to work remotely. You may also have anxiety about your kids and the new school year. If you do, you’re not alone.

DND’s engaged in broader GoC discussions around the future of work. In addition to scoping out our future work readiness approach, we have to factor-in national vaccination progress and a possible 4th wave. So it’s…not straightforward.

Once again, DND’s approach won’t be identical to other federal entities because of our mandate, footprint, info sec requirements and regional asymmetry. We have latitude to balance principles that apply across the public service with our needs.

That said, any supervisors’ discussions around returning to on-site work should start with #empathy and #flexibility. While empathy doesn’t mean automatic agreement, it *does mean* managers starting any discussion with an open mind.

Bases and Wing military managers: please reach out to HR Connect RH for guidance on managing public service staff. Further tangible tools to support decision-making are coming. Labour Relations is available to support and guide, too.

DYK: Tomorrow is the first nationally recognized Emancipation Day across Canada. @School_GC is holding a panel discussion on 3 August, and all public service employees are invited to tune-in: Celebrating Black History and Emancipation Day.

I hadn’t thought about “twisties” since gymnastics in middle school. The magnificent US gymnast, Simone Biles, led by example this week, determining that her well-being was the most important thing and that it was ok not to be ok.

Choosing to prioritize your mental health can be a hard call. But ultimately your well-being is worth more than any medal you can win—literal or figurative.

P.S. Go #TeamCanada!

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