Psychological Health and Safety in the Workplace


As employees, we all play a significant role in creating and sustaining a healthy work environment. But in order to do our part, we need to understand what it means to be part of a psychologically healthy and safe workplace. 

The material found here is designed to raise awareness and understanding about workplace factors and how they contribute to psychological safety. 

Learn more about:

  • how you can improve your own health, well-being and safety.
  • the responsibilities you have in contributing to a healthy and safe workplace.
  • tools to help you discuss your workplace concerns and needs with supervisors and colleagues.
  • how to effectively balance work and life demands.
  • how to positively contribute to the university community.
  • additional resources, services and policies.

See the introductory overview here and the framework here.

Psychosocial Risk Factors

Review the following 13 factors to help you understand how you can contribute to a psychologically healthy and safe workplace:

  1. Psychological support: an environment where psychological and mental health concerns are supported and responded to appropriately. 
  2. Organizational culture: the environment is characterized by trust, honesty and fairness.
  3. Clear leadership and expectations: effective leadership exists that enables individuals to know what to do, how their work contributes to the goals of the organization, and if change is approaching.
  4. Civility and respect: staff and faculty are respectful, considerate and collegial with one another.
  5. Psychological competencies and requirements: a staff member’s interpersonal/emotional competencies and job skills are appropriate for the position.
  6. Growth and development: staff members receive encouragement and support in the development of interpersonal, emotional and job skills.
  7. Recognition and reward: acknowledgement and appreciation of staff member’s efforts in a fair and timely manner.
  8. Involvement and influence: individuals are included in discussions about how work is done, how decisions are made, and the impact of those decisions on the work.
  9. Workload management: tasks and responsibilities can be accomplished successfully within the time available.
  10. Engagement: staff members enjoy and feel connected to their work and are motivated to do a good job.
  11. Balance: recognition and support for balance between the demands of work, family and personal life.
  12. Psychological protection: an environment in which psychological safety is ensured.
  13. Physical safety: appropriate action to protect employees’ physical safety at work.

For additional resources and learning opportunities related to each risk factor check out our support inventory

This framework has been developed in accordance with the national standard of Canada for Psychological health and safety in the workplace.

Developed by Human Resource Services in partnership with Environment, Health and Safety.