January 11, 2018
For Immediate Release
Davis Encourages Participation in PTSD Review
Paul Davis, Leader of the Official Opposition, is encouraging people with an interest in workers’ compensation for occupational stress injuries (OSI) including post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) to participate in WorkplaceNL’s ongoing review of its mental stress policy.
WorkplaceNL has announced that it will accept written submissions pertaining to this review until February 1, 2018. Davis will make a written presentation of his own in advance of the February 1 deadline for submissions, after raising the issue, asking questions and presenting petitions in the House of Assembly calling for presumptive coverage of PTSD for first responders.
“While all workers in Newfoundland and Labrador are entitled to coverage for an occupational stress injury, the issue is that because first responders are exposed to numerous events and can’t identify the specific event which triggered PTSD, they are unable to get coverage,” said Davis.
Davis has urged government to enact workers’ compensation legislation containing a presumptive clause with respect to PTSD for people employed in various front-line emergency response professions, including firefighters, paramedics and other emergency medical service professionals, and police officers not already covered under federal legislation.
“Other provinces, including Alberta, Ontario, New Brunswick and Nova Scotia have all introduced legislation and have recognized PTSD as an illness that is often the result of an accumulation of repeated exposures and experiences that first responders have in the course of their careers,” said Davis. “The fact is that in Newfoundland and Labrador, there are first responders today who continue to fall through the cracks while suffering from an OSI because they are denied benefits. What’s required of them today is to show what event, what experience, or what incident caused their illness. And they can’t do it,” said Davis.
Director of Operations and Communications, Office of the Official Opposition
(709) 729 6105, firstname.lastname@example.org
WorkplaceNL to modernize approach to work-related mental health issues
Thursday, November 23, 2017
St. John’s, NL – WorkplaceNL has initiated a review of its mental stress policy (Policy EN-18). The goal of the review is to modernize the approach to work-related mental health issues, including post-traumatic stress disorder. WorkplaceNL is also partnering with workplace parties to develop occupational health and safety programs that support mental health in the workplace, including workshops and webinars.
WorkplaceNL and the Hon. Sherry Gambin-Walsh, Minister Responsible for WorkplaceNL met with interested parties on November 15, 2017 to seek input on the prevention of, and compensation for, work-related mental stress.
Potential changes will come from a two-stage process.
The first is the immediate policy review, where changes will be informed by a review of mental-health related policies of other Canadian workers’ compensation boards and consultation with WorkplaceNL’s primary stakeholders, the Newfoundland and Labrador Federation of Labour and the Newfoundland and Labrador Employers’ Council. This is WorkplaceNL’s standard policy consultation process.
In the longer-term, a review of mental stress coverage in the workers’ compensation legislation will be informed by formal research and input from interested parties. WorkplaceNL will accept written submissions pertaining to this review until February 1, 2018.
WorkplaceNL will engage a research partner to conduct research and review literature relating to work-related mental health issues, particularly as it relates to workplaces in Newfoundland and Labrador.