Work Smart. Work Safe.
Keep your "Heads Up" and work safe!

Mind the gap… Your six safety stories!

By Matt King

This week, May 7-13, is Mental Health Week, a time in which the importance of your mental health — in life, work and everything else — ought to be stressed. We’ve commented on mental health in the workplace before, especially in relationship to stress and keeping a good work/life balance, but it’s important to keep focused on the broad spectrum of workplace safety — and that definitely includes talking about your mental health.

To keep the conversation going, here are your six safety stories: 

  • Mind your safety… As I mentioned, it’s Mental Health Week, and the Canadian Centre for Occupational Health and Safety is recognizing it by offering their resources to encourage businesses to include mental health as part of a healthy workplace strategy. This includes a webinar that recorded on Tuesday and is now available online.
  • Smashing the stigma… This article, from the Winnipeg Free Press, gives a fantastic rundown of the many mental-health issues that workplaces need to address, as well as their attached stigmas. The article also comes with a list of 12 possible psychosocial risk factors known to have an impact on organizational health.
  • An unhappy anniversary… This Mother’s Day weekend marks the 20th anniversary of Nova Scotia’s Westray mining disaster, and that province’s Chronicle Herald has an excellent overview of the incident, in which 26 miners died after a coal-dust and methane-gas explosion tore through the mine.
  • Fathers and sons… Josh Rene, whose father Jamie Barker died of a workplace accident 12 years ago, is opening up about his father and the importance of workplace safety after industrial painter Kent Morton fell to his own death in January. Rene hopes to use his father’s story to promote workplace safety.
  • Even the roof over your head… A tile setter was sent to the hospital on Wednesday after the ceiling of a steam room collapsed on him at Commonwealth Stadium. The room was part of the Edmonton Eskimos dressing room and is not open to the public. The man’s condition is not known.
  • In memoriam… A man died this week after falling into a sorting and conveyor belt system inside a Vancouver Island recycling plant. Officials will do further investigations as to determine the accident’s cause.

Remember, work smart, work safe.

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