May 4 to 10 is Mental Health Awareness Week across Canada.  At ArcelorMittal Dofasco, Mental Health is an important part of our Journey to Zero – a program that aims to eliminate accidents, injuries and illnesses – both physical and psychological.

Katrina mental health blog 2In support of these initiatives and in continuation of our investment in mental wellness programming, a new Mental Health Policy was implemented on Monday reinforcing our commitment to employees while setting expectations of leadership.  This policy not only brings to life our philosophy but it sets a new benchmark within our industry.

An important part of improved mental wellbeing is the elimination of stimga. That’s why we’re taking time, alongside all other organizations recognizing Mental Health Awareness Week, to talk about the resources available to employees as well as how mental illness fits into our broader behaviour based health and safety program, “Stop. Challenge. Choose. at home and work”.  Something everyone should consider using in their daily lives… stopping to recognize the symptoms associated with mental illness, challenging ourselves to confront stigma and choosing to help ourselves and those around us.

In Canada, 1 in 5 battle a mental illness every day with 500,000 of our fellow citizens missing work weekly from mental health related issues. The challenges are even greater for children, with 4 out of 5 who need support not able to access it. We continue to work closely with community partners to improve mental healthcare services in our region. From our work at St. Joseph’s Healthcare’s West 5th Campus and their Mental Health Morning – to significant investments in Child and Youth Outpatient Mental Health Programming at McMaster Children’s Hospital.

ArcelorMittal Dofasco is committed to being a leader in workplace mental health and was recognized in 2014 by Excellence Canada. Key to our approach is an Employee and Family Assistance Program (EFAP) available to both permanent and casual employees as well as their families.

This confidential self-referral service connects employees and family members to mental health professionals at no cost, covering a range of services from counseling to addiction support.

If you’re an employee or family member and need to talk, we encourage you to connect with an EFAP specialist by calling 1-800-663-1142 or by going online at

– Katrina McFadden, Vice President Human Resources and Corporate Administration