Toronto, Ontario, October 10, 2017 — Four in ten employed Canadians (40%) have either been diagnosed as depressed or believe they suffer from depression, a new Ipsos survey has found. This includes working Canadians with a clinical diagnosis, those without a diagnosis who currently believe they suffer from depression, and those without a diagnosis who previously thought they were suffering from depression but no longer do.
The survey, conducted on behalf of the Great-West Life Centre for Mental Health in the Workplace, finds that mental health is an issue that affects many working Canadians: 15% believe they are currently suffering from a mental illness, while others report having experienced a number of problems over the past two weeks. These include experiences such as feeling nervous, anxious or on edge (12%), or being unable to control their worrying on most days (13%). While four in ten (40%) managers say they’ve been trained to deal with these and other workplace mental health issues in employees, this leaves a majority (60%) who have received no such training.
For some, these issues can have implications for people’s ability to cope with other areas of their life. One in ten (12%) of those who reported experiencing these problems in the two weeks prior to taking the survey said they had made it difficult (4% extremely / 8% very) for them to do their work, take care of things at home, or get along with other people.
Some working Canadians are more likely to experience depression and other mental health issues than others. Significant differences can be seen by age, with Millennials (defined as working Canadians aged 18-34) being the most likely to…
- Have experience of depression: 50%, vs. 39% of Gen X’ers (aged 35-54) and 29% of Baby Boomers (aged 55+);
- Believe they currently have a mental illness: 21%, vs. 14% of Gen X’ers and 9% of Baby Boomers;
- Report being treated unfairly in the workplace due to a mental illness: 15%, vs. 12% of Gen X’ers and 12% of Boomers;
- Have felt nervous, anxious or on edge in the past two weeks: 21%, vs. 11% of Gen X’ers and 7% of Boomers;
- Been unable to control their worrying on most days in the past two weeks: 20%, vs. 11% of Gen X’ers and 7% of Boomers;
- Find it difficult to cope with these problems: 17%, vs. 11% of Gen X’ers and 9% of Boomers.
Mental health issues also appear to impact managers to a greater extent than employees without management responsibilities. Nearly half of managers (44%) report some experience with depression, compared to 37% of employees. Among those with this experience, managers are also twice as likely as employees to feel they are treated unfairly in the workplace because of their mental illness (18% vs. 9%). Managers are also more likely than employees to…
- Have felt nervous, anxious or on edge in the past two weeks: 15% vs. 10%
- Have been unable to control their worrying on most days in the past two weeks: 15% vs. 11%
- Find that these problems made it difficult for them to cope at work, home or with other people: 14% vs. 11%.
Bullying and Harassment
For some, workplace stress or mental anguish can stem from how they are treated by colleagues. One in ten Canadian workers (10%) say they are being bullied or harassed at work, either verbally, physically or sexually. Reports of bullying skew higher among Millennials (13%) than Gen X (9%) or Baby Boomers Canadians (8%), and among managers (12%) than employees (8%).
A further one in ten (9%) report experiencing discrimination in the workplace because of their cultural or ethnic background, disability, sexual orientation, gender or age. This rises to 11% among Millennials, compared to 8% of Gen X’ers and 7% of Boomers. Managers (12%) are twice as likely as employees (6%) to say they experience discrimination at work.
These are some of the findings of an Ipsos poll conducted between September 19 and September 27, 2016, on behalf of the Great-West Life Centre for Mental Health in the Workplace. For this survey, a sample of 5,010 employed Canadians aged 18+ from Ipsos' online panel was interviewed online. Weighting was then employed to balance demographics to ensure that the sample's composition reflects that of the adult population according to Census data and to provide results intended to approximate the sample universe. The precision of Ipsos online polls is measured using a credibility interval. In this case, the poll is accurate to within ±1.6 percentage points, 19 times out of 20, had all employed Canadians been polled. The credibility interval will be wider among subsets of the population. All sample surveys and polls may be subject to other sources of error, including, but not limited to coverage error, and measurement error.
For more information on this news release, please contact:
Vice President, Canada
Ipsos Public Affairs
+1 416 324-2002
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