Scrabble tiles spelling "Mental Health"The University of Windsor is developing a Mental Health Strategy for Employees.

Employee engagement identified as critical in development of strategy for mental health

His office will engage UWindsor faculty and staff in the development of a Mental Health Strategy for Employees, says Clinton Beckford, acting vice-president for equity, diversity, and inclusion.

“As an employer, the University understands that workplaces can play a key role in promoting and protecting the mental health of its employees,” Dr. Beckford says. “The workplace can and should be a source of positivity as it provides individuals with a purpose, financial security, a sense of identity and social connections, but the workplace also has the potential to be a source of stress that impacts mental health and well-being.”

According to Statistics Canada, one in five Canadians will face a mental health issue in their lifetime and approximately 1/3 of individuals facing mental health challenges don’t access help largely due to stigma.

The University of Windsor has undertaken some of the preliminary work necessary to set the foundation for the development of a Mental Health Strategy for Employees, says Beckford:

“Given the events of the last several years and the results of the Employee Engagement Survey conducted in 2022, both of which have given us different perspectives and an even deeper understanding of the importance of mental health and well-being, we are now ready to move forward.”

He identifies meaningful engagement of faculty, staff, supervisors, and senior leaders as critical to identify strategies and supports that span the continuum of mental health: prevention, early intervention, recovery, and return to work.

The coming weeks will see the establishment of a steering committee to review best practices and develop the strategy. Watch for updates on the Mental Health Strategy website.