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Showing posts from June, 2015

"Old Ways New Doors"

Standard police checks will no longer include mental health records or acquittals under new Ontario law. Wow. This is a significant step in the right direction. Good for you, Ontario! But wait. Did you even realize that this was standard practice in Ontario and continues in other Canadian provinces? Or, maybe you wonder why this even matters. It might matter if you are applying for a job.

The information that is supplied to potential employers as part of a criminal records check is used to influence a hiring decision for some organizations. Much of that information is important and relevant to certain jobs and industries. But mental health information should not be included and revealed to potential employers. As both a mental health advocate and a human resources professional, I have long believed that this is a violation of privacy. It also speaks to so many flaws in the way we view, react to, and treat those with mental illness.

Police should not have to act as first responders to…