Staying safe and taking care of our mental health during COVID-19
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The month of May is important because it shines the light on three special awareness weeks:
- Mental Health Week, May 4 to 10
- North American Occupational Safety and Health Week, May 3 to 9
- Emergency Preparedness Week, May 3 to 9
These topics have become increasingly important especially during the COVID-19 pandemic.
ECCC takes the mental health and safety of all its employees to heart, especially in these trying times. Every week, we have learned to adapt to the evolving COVID-19 situation, and the necessary public health measures that keep us at home. Under these challenging circumstances, some may find comfort in working from the safety of their own homes while others may find it hard working in isolation and feeling disconnected.
Taking care of your mental health by building social connections
In this time of physical distancing, we want to recognize everyone's efforts to maintain a "social connection" with your teams and those around you. While keeping a physical distance, we should also think of social solidarity through communication and other activities. We encourage sincere and honest communication in times of COVID-19, where isolation and loneliness are present.
While fulfilling our mandate to protect the environment for Canadians, we must also protect our work environment. It is within our power to create a healthy, safe, and respectful work environment, even if our workspace is different.
Stay tuned for more information regarding remote activities to take place during Mental Health Week. You won't want to miss them!
Creating safe workplaces and communities
During challenging times and as most of us work remotely from home, the importance and value of Occupational Health and Safety (OHS) is critical. We encourage you to read the 12 practical tips when working from home from Cadre21.org to help you stay physically and mentally healthy. You can also find a variety of topics related to OHS on the intranet, including mandatory training information.
Preparing canadians for emergencies
As the world grapples with COVID-19, ECCC is committed to continuing its critical work to prepare for any type of emergency.
Whether there is an environmental emergency, spring flooding, or hurricanes, our staff is working around the clock. It is essential that Canadians are provided with the information they need to make timely decisions on how best to protect themselves, their loved ones, and their property.
Thank you to the emergency management staff who stand ready to protect and support Canadians during emergencies, even in this new complex work environment. For more information, visit getprepared.gc.ca.
Join the efforts to overcome this challenging time
While this period is unusual and uncertain, it is your continued resilience, compassion, self-care, and caring for each other that are helping us get through this pandemic together. We are grateful for the efforts everyone is making to keep our people, our workplaces, and our communities safe and healthy in the face of COVID-19.
We encourage all of you to participate in the virtual activities throughout the week. Make use of the available resources to strengthen your mental health, foster a safer and healthy work environment, even at home, and to help you be prepared when emergencies arise.
Take good care and stay safe.
Chief Human Resources Management Officer
Human Resources Branch
Assistant Deputy Minister
Corporate Services and Finance Branch
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