Mental Health Frameworks – From Intent to Action
In 2016 at annual meeting of the Association of Professional Executives of the Public Service of Canada the highest levels of the Canadian Government committed to making mental health a predominant concern for action. Association of Professional Executives of the Public Service of Canada. The Clerk of the Privy Council said:
- Mental Health is inextricably tied to how we work.
- We must create the supports needed.
- Part of it is changing culture – getting rid of stigma and creating dialogue where issues are discussable around norms and values
- We need to build capacity through training but to understand the root causes of mental health issues
- We need to be clear about objectives – measuring, reporting, improving and learning
The Secretary to the Treasury Board recounted her own story with the essential message to all public servants: “It takes a keen eye and an educated mind, and a supportive family and society. We need to keep talking, and get out there to support those that need our support not only in words, but in our judgement and actions and in our compassion.”
With this in mind we are now developing frameworks for mental health in government, that focus on planned priorities for action in culture, leadership and management. We have developed logical approaches to knowing all the areas in which strong capacity and capability need to be develop that go beyond training and communications, but consider the essential changes needed in management processes so that dialogue about mental health becomes a central consideration about how people work.