Tag: featured

Public Servant Ignites ‘Little Voice Movement’

Public Servant Ignites ‘Little Voice Movement’

July 18, 2016 | By | Add a Comment

One public servant is leading the charge behind a movement to inspire ideas and empower communities.

The initiative is called the ‘Little Voice Movement’ and it’s based on the children’s book ‘Little Voice’ by Amanda Bernardo from Parks Canada, which she wrote and self published last year:


The book aims to help children be confident, creative, ambitious and proud of who they are by listening to their inner voice and drawing from their inner strength.

The newly launched Little Voice Movement is about, “inspiring children, adults, teachers, parents and entire communities to listen to their little voice. There is no age limit, no time limit, simply a commitment to inspire others.”

How to Join the Movement

To join the Movement, one just has to register to become a Little Voice Ambassador. By registering, Ambassadors can then create their own inspirational movement in their community.

Whether they choose to support a school, an important cause, or someone’s future, Little Voice donates $5 dollars from every book sale that Ambassadors have made to support their movement.

So far, the book has raised close to $7,000 for the Alzheimer Society of Canada.

Little Voice continues to donate a portion of every book sale to the Alzheimer Society of Canada while supporting the many more movements of Little Voice Ambassadors across Canada.

The Story Behind Little Voice

The idea for Little Voice originated after Bernardo graduated university and was faced with career uncertainty.

That prompted Bernardo to express herself through poetry about lack of confidence and life uncertainty.

It wasn’t until she began volunteering with the Ottawa Network for Education and reading to children that she realized that they were also struggling with the same issues, as can anyone of any age.

She then went back to one of the poems she had written and decided to turn it into a children’s book.

And thus, Little Voice was born.

Other Links

Learn more about the Little Voice Movement here.

Register to become a Little Voice Ambassador by clicking here.


Watch Amanda Bernardo speak about creativity and innovation in a Future Leaders of Ontario minute mentoring segment here:

Watch the television announcement for the Little Voice Movement here:

Public Servants Get Real About Diversity in the Public Service

Public Servants Get Real About Diversity in the Public Service

June 28, 2016 | By | 1 Comment

Yesterday was Canadian Multiculturalism Day, which the Clerk and departments/agencies were promoting awareness of online:

The topic of diversity in the public service has been a recurring one this month.

First, Public Works and Government Services Canada produced a short video starring public servants titled, “Show Your Colours” to promote awareness around fighting homophobia and transphobia:

Secondly during National Public Service Week, the Clerk was direct with his remarks during his first television interview when he stated that, “the public service has work to do in all aspects of diversity, frankly.”

This was followed by public servants continuing an honest and open discussion on diversity in the public service, as it was the theme for this month’s LeadersGC event.

This month’s LeadersGC was co-hosted by Christine Donoghue, President of the Public Service Commission.

When public servants were asked which HR tools are needed so that leaders at all levels can benefit from inclusion in the workplace, many public servants responded by saying that staffing processes need to be reevaluated so that hiring managers can ‘cast a wider net’ and hire based on best fit.

The Public Service Commission did recently launch the new direction in staffing on April 1, meant to give hiring managers more flexibility and the ability to tailor staffing requirements according to their own unique business needs.


Question 1) The terms diversity and employment equity are often used interchangeably. What is the difference between them?

Question 2) With Canada’s changing demographics, do you think that employment equity groups reflect Canadian society?

Question 3) What are the risks of not adopting an approach that encourages diversity and inclusion at work?

Question 4) Tell us about how your contribution through your own diverse identity has led to a successful outcome at work.

Question 5) What are some ways to effectively manage the challenges associated with diversity in a team?

Question 6) What action is the public service taking to foster an inclusive workplace and increase the understanding of diversity?

Question 7) What HR tools are needed so that leaders at all levels can benefit from inclusion in the workplace?

Question 8) What kind of efforts and initiatives would you personally undertake to ensure a commitment to diversity and inclusion?

Other Links

Read the official Storify from the LeadersGC chat on diversity in the public service by clicking here.

Second Joint Task Force Report Released on Workplace Mental Health

Second Joint Task Force Report Released on Workplace Mental Health

June 1, 2016 | By | Add a Comment

The second Treasury Board/PSAC joint task force report on mental health in the public service workplace has been released.

Gaps Found

While the first report released back in December recommended that the public service adopt the National Standard on Psychological Health and Safety in the Workplace and its progressive implementation, the task force in its second report found that:

  • Many departments and agencies have said that they are ill-equipped to align with the National Standard;
  • There is a lack of accountability and oversight to ensure that organization-specific committees are in place and that they are able to fulfill their mandate; and
  • Current legislative requirements and public service-wide committee structures are not well known or fully utilized.

The second report recommends that deputy heads should be made accountable for establishing, staffing and overseeing organizational occupational health and safety committees.

As well, deputy heads should be made accountable for ensuring that the committees are trained and equipped to fulfill their mandate.

They recommend that minimum training include: committee orientation training, hazard analysis, workplace inspections, and hazardous occurrence investigation and reporting.

Repeated Calls for a Single, Public Service-Wide Centre of Expertise

The joint task force repeated its call for the creation of a single, public service-wide centre of expertise, that would be an efficient and cost-effective means to help guide organizational alignment with the National Standard.

The report determined that the centre of expertise should be a stand-alone entity under the umbrella of the National Joint Council.

Department/Agency-Specific Findings

The report identified a lack or absence of the following:

  • An understanding of roles and responsibilities;
  • Joint selection of champions;
  • A joint employee engagement strategy;
  • Training of organizational OHS committees;
  • Organizational assessments; and
  • A joint communications and promotion strategy.

The task force recommended that departments and agencies should focus on the following to support alignment with the National Standard:

  • Establish a joint governance structure to support the psychological health and safety management system within the organization, including the selection of psychological health and safety champions;
  • Ensure adequate resources (staff and funds) and infrastructure;
  • Ensure that OHS committees are equipped with training to fulfill their duties;
  • Identify psychological health and safety factors through workplace assessments to inform continuous improvement; and
  • Jointly develop and implement strategies for employee engagement, communication and promotion.

Other Links

Read the full report by clicking here.