Vancouver City Savings Credit Union is supporting employee well-being by increasing its coverage for mental-health benefits from $1,500 to $10,000, per employee and per dependant.

The enhanced benefit, effective July 1, provides coverage for mental-health providers such as counsellors — including group counselling sessions — and psychologists. Vancity’s current mental-health offerings include a telemedicine portal with access to mental-health specialists and its employee assistance program.

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“With this new amount, no one will have a financial barrier to getting the psychological support they need,” said Janelle Aaker, chief equity and people officer at Vancity, in an emailed statement to Benefits Canada.

The benefits are part of an overall mental-health strategy that includes de-stigmatizing mental health and emphasizing the importance of mental well-being and resilience. Vancity’s executives are required to take a mental-health training course so they’re better able to talk about mental health in the workplace. And the organization has a mental-health first-aid team, consisting of employees who have received training through the Mental Health Commission of Canada.

“It’s really important to take the stigma away from mental health,” said Aaker. “Keeping your brain and heart healthy should be as important as healthy teeth.”

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