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Ontario's Union for fairness, equality and respect at work.

This May, your union encourages you to to observe Mental Health Week. 

This week (May 2 to 8) is an opportunity to listen, reach out and being there for our family, friends and co-workers in the struggles they face. 

One in four Canadians tested positive for symptoms of depression, anxiety or post-traumatic stress disorder in spring 2021, according to Statistics Canada.

This year's theme is about empathy, of putting yourself in other people's shoes to understand what they are feeling and to connect us all. 

Remember you are not alone in the challenges you face. There is help. 

Here are some tips to take care of your mental health:

  • Stay connected with friends and family.
  • Exercise (keep moving) to manage stress and strengthen your mental health. If going for a walk outdoors, ensure you maintain physical distancing (at least 6 feet apart).
  • Get a good amount of sleep each day to help manage the anxiety you may feel.
  • Eat well-balanced meals (with lots of vegetables and fruits). Moderate your intake of unhealthy comfort food.
  • Create a routine.
  • Practice deep breathing exercises or yoga to lower your anxiety.
  • Avoid substance abuse that could spiral into an addiction.
  • Engage in activities and hobbies as outlets to minimize stress.
  • Set time aside to unplug and take a break from your electronics (social media, video games, etc)
  • Helping others in their time of need may also help you feel better. Regularly check-in by telephone or video calls with neighbours, co-workers, loved ones or people in your community who may need some extra assistance.
  • Utilize reliable news sources to keep updated, while trying to avoid information overload that can increase your anxiety. Reduce the time you spend listening or reading news that makes you feel stressed.
  • Remember it’s healthy to talk about “negative” feelings you experience and it is ok if others want to express “negative” thoughts.
  • Listening to each other can be one of the most powerful things you can do during this time. You don’t have to fix other people’s problems or try to make them feel better. Sometimes people just appreciate being heard and knowing that they are not alone.
  • If you are feeling alone and helpless, let family and friends know.
  • Share positive stories of those who are recovering or have recovered with others.
  • Thank frontline workers for the work they are doing to keep our loved ones safe.
  • Be kind to yourself and to others – this is a difficult time for everyone – give yourself permission to take time to figure it out.
  • Challenge worrying thoughts and accepting some fear is normal.

If you are facing a mental health emergency, contact CRISIS SERVICES CANADA

RESOURCES

ConnexOntario Helpline
Toll-free: 1-866-531-2600

211 Ontario
Toll-free: 1-877-330-3213

BounceBack
Toll-free: 1-866-345-0224

YOUTH

Good2Talk (For Ages 17 to 25)
Toll-free: 1-866-925-5454

Kids Help Phone(For Ages 5 to 20)
Toll-free: 1-800-668-6868

INDIGENOUS

Hope for Wellness Helpline

Toll-free: 1-855-242-3310

Talk 4 Healing
Toll-free: 1-855-554-4325

 

ONLINE RESOURCES

 

Mental Health Commission of Canada 

 

Government of Canada

 

CAMH 

 

WELLNESS TOGETHER 

 

UFCW Canada WebCampus Mental Health Courses

 

UFCW Canada Mental Health Webinar Series 

 

 

 

 

 

Your Union's Latest Stories

  • As a follow up to our membership meeting, the union has received an employee contact list from the employer. We have reconciled our list with their list and it was noted that we do no have cell phone numbers for 8 members.  We are currently working on getting these missing numbers to ensure all members have access to these updates.

    As discussed at the meeting, the union also requested of the employer that 6 members be allowed to form the negotiating committee; 2 members from fleet, and 4 from the plant, representing various job classifications. The employer has yet to agree to the number of committee members based on ensuring “minimal business disruption”.

    Although we’ve also requested to negotiate the fleet and plant together, as they were separate certifications, we may be faced with two separate sets of negotiations. 

    A link to nominate bargaining committee members will be sent to you soon.  When looking to nominate someone, or nominate yourself, please take into consideration that those sitting at the negotiations table may likely be your future union stewards.  You should feel confident with these representatives to ensure that they will look out for the needs of all classifications and your bargaining unit as a whole and not just their individual needs.  These representatives should be knowledgeable and have a good understanding of the business. 

    For clarity, our proposed bargaining unit includes workers from Waste Water.  The employer has challenged Waste Water based on “having a different community of interest”.  We wholeheartedly disagree with this challenge and will first attempt to include this classification in negotiations.  Failing this, we will request hearings at the Ontario Labour Board to argue our position, which we feel we have  a very strong position.

    This attempt at challenging Waster Water is simply an effort for the employer to continue to divide and detract from your goal of achieving the best union contract for your co-workers. 

    Unfortunately, we may be faced with having to follow due process at the Labour Board in order to resolve this matter. 

    Remember – your union cannot stop the employer from making business decisions.  We unfortunately have to wait for them to act before we can respond accordingly.

    We know this seems counterintuitive but we will hold them accountable to you by means of utilizing the Labour Relations Act.  Our hope is to eventually build a relationship that will avoid utilizing the act to expedite resolutions. 

    Thank you for all your continued support during this transition period. 

    Stay strong and stay united!  Workers matter and your voice is being heard.   

    Visit our 'New to the Union' section for more information. 

     
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