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Workplace Mental Health

  • Issued: January 2017
  • Content last reviewed: February 2018

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Statement from Minister of Labour Kevin Flynn

Kevin Flynn, Minister of Labour

In the last few years, we have become more and more aware of the issue of psychological health and safety in the workplace. Creating psychologically healthy and safe workplaces benefits employers and workers as well as their families.

A psychologically healthy workplace is one that actively works to prevent harm to worker psychological health, including in negligent, reckless, or intentional ways, and promotes psychological well-being. Such workplaces enjoy better recruitment and retention of talent, improved employee engagement, enhanced productivity, higher levels of creativity and innovation, and higher profit levels.

At the Ministry of Labour, we are taking steps to bring the issue of mental health in the workplace to the forefront. The Premier, in her mandate letter to me instructed me to continue to expand mental health protections for Ontario’s workers. We have already taken steps by creating a presumption that post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) diagnosed in first responders is work-related, allowing for faster access to WSIB benefits, resources and timely treatment.

Below are links to websites that have valuable information on mental health in the workplace. I urge you to take advantage of this information to see how you can make your workplace more psychologically healthy.

Kevin Flynn
Ontario Minister of Labour

Important Numbers

  • If you're in crisis call 911.
  • Find a crisis centre. Distress centres across Ontario offer support and services including 24-hour distress help lines.

Chronic and Traumatic Mental Stress Entitlement

In May 2017, the Workplace Safety and Insurance Act, 1997 (WSIA) was amended to provide for both chronic and traumatic mental stress entitlement. These amendments come into force on January 1, 2018.

On December 14th, Bill 177 (An Act to Implement Budget Measures, 2017), which clarifies the transitional and retroactive coverage of the expanded chronic and traumatic mental stress entitlement, received Royal Assent. The Bill amends the WSIA to require as of January 1, 2018 that:

  • Claims for mental stress entitlement pending at the WSIB and WSIAT be adjudicated by the WSIB in accordance with the expanded mental stress entitlement; and
  • Claims for mental stress entitlement arising on or after April 29, 2014 be adjudicated by the WSIB in accordance with the expanded mental stress entitlement.

Workers whose claims for mental stress entitlement were previously denied may wish to seek reconsideration of their claims by the WSIB and WSIAT.

The government acknowledges that the concerns raised by the Ontario Network of Injured Workers Group (ONIWG) and the Injured Workers Consultants (IWC) about clarifying transitional coverage for mental stress injuries in their recent application were very helpful in developing the amendments to the WSIA.

PTSD Summit

On October 17, 2017 the Ministry of Labour hosted a summit to address post-traumatic mental stress disorder (PTSD). To request a report on the summit, email

Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD)

Think Mental Health is a joint effort from Ontario Health and Safety System Partners to provide business owners with the resources to better understand and prevent mental health problems.

Other health and safety partner resources

Additional mental health resources for workplaces