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Survey Results: Your Psychological Health & Safety at Work

This spring we surveyed our component (Health Services) about members' psychological health and safety at work. Nearly 3,000 members responded and here is what you said: 

    1. When it comes to experiencing stress in the workplace, our component reported big problems with lack of recognition and physical violence.
       a) Only 26.7% feel they are fully recognized and appreciated by management. 
       b) 30.8% experienced physical violence at least a few times in the past year; this is 20.7% higher than the average for Canadian workers.

    2. When asked how you would rate the psychological health & safety climate in your workplace, only 27.8% said it was good, or healthy and supportive.

    3. Over 70% reported sometimes, often or always getting behind with work. Workers with more than 11 years of experience reported falling behind more often than workers with less experience in the healthcare field.

    4. Anxiety and depression, which has been higher throughout the workforce since the pandemic, is also high among members in our component.

    5. Those that identify outside of traditional or binary gender identities reported having worse experiences when it comes to all stress factors. 

    6. When it comes to burnout, medical lab assistants are most affected followed by administrative workers, medical lab technicians, social program officers, physiotherapists or occupational therapists, mental health or addiction services workers, nurses and care aides. 

Other areas that need improvement include: more influence over working conditions; increased communication about the information you need to do your job; and more support from supervisors along with the resources you need to do high quality work. 

On a positive note, when it comes to job satisfaction a majority (58.6%) are satisfied or very satisfied with their work in general, with only 5.5% feeling very unsatisfied. This reflects a dedication and love for the work we do in the health care sector despite the many challenges we face right now. 

What can we do next? 

We need solutions now. While we intend to share the results of our survey with the Ministry of Health (more on that below), the most direct way to improve conditions is through your Occupational Health and Safety (OHS) committee. This is a place where it's safe to share your concerns and your ideas. It's also an employer's duty under the Worker's Compensation Act to work cooperatively with OHS committees. 

If you haven't connected with your OHS committee, you can check your OHS board at work to see who the current members are. If your worksite doesn't have one you can sign up here: to get a committee up and running. If you're already involved, we hope to see many more members join you. 

This May we also brought together over 200 members for the first 'Steward and Occupational Health and Safety (OHS) Representative Conference.' Members had the opportunity to learn, share their experiences and connect with others as our component works hard to build a stronger steward and OHS network. 

Advocating to government 

While we work to improve conditions at our worksites, our union is pushing the provincial government to step up with long-term solutions as well. In the coming months, we'll be seeking opportunities to bring the results of our survey to the Ministry of Health to show them once again that it's not just doctors and nurses that are dealing with stress, violence and burnout. 

We will also share the results with other organizations focused on the safety and well-being of B.C. workers such as SafeCareBC and SWITCH BC. 


Below are some recommended online mental health resources that you can access individually or with your co-workers: 

The Mental Health Commission of Canada has also identified 13 factors that impact psychological health and safety in the workplace: 13 Workplace Factors. These factors are a useful guide for employers and employees working together to improve conditions. 


The full results of the survey are available here: BCGEU Workplace Stress Survey Report.

Thank you again for participating. Your feedback is invaluable as we work together to set priorities and find solutions. 

In solidarity, 

Mahen Ramdharry 
Vice-President Health Services