Canadians with disabilities more likely to report their organization does not value diversity and inclusion

Canadians with disabilities more likely to report their organization does not value diversity and inclusion

In a special report on Diversity, Equity, Inclusion and Belonging, this month’s Mental Health Index finds a discrepancy between the overall perception of organizations valuing diversity and inclusion and the lived experiences of Canadians with disabilities

TORONTO–(BUSINESS WIRE)–LifeWorks, a leading provider of digital and in-person total well-being solutions supported by TELUS Health, today released its monthly Mental Health Index revealing that Canadian workers with disabilities are nearly twice as likely to report that their organization does not value diversity and inclusion. The report also revealed that 70 per cent of workers with disabilities in Canada feel like they are not valued at work. On the other hand, when Canadian workers without disabilities were asked, 74 per cent said their organization does value diversity and inclusion.

The Index found that Canadian workers are experiencing increasing strain with an unfavourable mental health score.

  • The Mental Health Index score for November 2022 is 64.3 points out of one hundred, a slight decline from October. This marks five months since improvement.

Canadians with disabilities, visible minorities and LGBTQ2+ Canadians believe they are being judged at work

  • Canadians with disabilities are more than twice as likely to indicate they cannot be themselves at work.
  • LGBTQ2+ Canadians and visible minorities are 50 per cent more likely to indicate they cannot be themselves at work.
  • LGBTQ2+ Canadians are nearly 50 per cent more likely to report their ideas are not valued at work.

Marginalized Canadian workers are more likely to receive negative comments from their manager

  • Canadians with disabilities and LGBTQ2+ Canadians are nearly twice as likely to receive negative comments from their manager.
  • Respondents who are underweight are more than twice as likely to receive negative comments from their manager.
  • Canadians with disabilities are 70 per cent more likely to not feel cared about at work.

Comments from TELUS Health Chief Operating Officer, Michael Dingle

“While it is positive to see that many Canadians feel diversity is important to their organization, we are seeing a concerning disconnect between perception and reality for individuals who are part of diverse groups. It is critically important for Canadian organizations to commit to continuously listening, learning and embracing different perspectives – to cultivate a culture where everyone belongs, feels valued and knows they can thrive in a safe and equitable environment. Not doing so poses significant risks to employee well-being, retention and business results.”

Comments from LifeWorks Global Leader and Senior Vice President, Research and Total Well-being, Paula Allen

“Our data clearly illustrates that it is time for organizations to re-evaluate how diversity, equity, inclusion and belonging is experienced by diverse groups of people on a day-to-day basis. What do the daily interactions look like between managers and employees? Are there ongoing opportunities and safe spaces for employees to share feedback and concerns? How can all voices be heard and valued? These are all things that promote a mentally healthy workplace, but a workplace can not be mentally healthy if there are vastly different experiences by some. Diversity, equity, inclusion and belonging are all integral to workplace mental health.”

The full Canadian LifeWorks Mental Health Index™ report can be found here. This month, the report includes additional insights on whether Canadians experience negative comments from their co-workers, whether Canadians have been treated differently by a healthcare professional because of race, ethnicity, gender or weight, and more.

LifeWorks is a wholly owned subsidiary of TELUS now operating as part of TELUS Health as a result of its recent acquisition.

About the Mental Health Index

The monthly survey by LifeWorks was conducted through an online survey in English and French from November 11 to 18, 2022 with 3,000 respondents in Canada. All respondents reside in Canada and were employed within the last six months. The data has been statistically weighted to ensure the regional and gender composition of the sample reflect this population. The Mental Health Index is published monthly, beginning April 2020.

The Mental Health Index is based on a response scoring system that then turns individual responses into point values. Higher point values are associated with better mental health and less mental health risk. Scores between 0 to 49 correspond with distress levels, scores between 50 to 79 correspond with strain levels and scores between 80 to 100 correspond with optimal levels of mental health.

About TELUS Health

TELUS Health is a global healthcare company serving people in more than 160 countries delivering both digital innovation and clinical services to improve total physical, mental and financial health and wellness across the full spectrum of primary and preventative care. By leveraging the power of technology to deliver connected solutions and services both in-person and virtually, TELUS Health is improving access to care and revolutionizing the flow of information while facilitating collaboration, efficiency, and productivity for physicians, pharmacists, health authorities, allied healthcare professionals, insurers, employers and people globally, progressing its vision of transforming healthcare and empowering people to live healthier lives.

Our clinical team is composed of renowned and passionate health professionals around the world delivering best-in-class people-centric care to hundreds of thousands of employers, professionals and their families.

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