PTSD officially recognized as occupational disease in Manitoba as of Jan. 1

Changes to the Workers Compensation Act in Manitoba recognizing post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) as a work-related occupational disease will come into effect Jan. 1.
“PTSD causes tremendous pain and suffering to those affected by it. This first-in-Canada legislation will offer all workers who have experienced traumatic events in the workplace the support they need to heal and get back to work,” said Premier Greg Selinger.

When a worker who has experienced a traumatic event on the job is diagnosed with PTSD, the Workers Compensation Board will presume his condition was caused by the job automatically.

The new bill will extend coverage and benefits to all workers eligible under the Workers Compensation Board who are diagnosed with PTSD by a medical professional. This will ensure timely access to compensation and support services, with the long-term goal of reducing the stigma attached to mental illness, he said.

“This legislation is an important recognition of the fact that not all debilitating injuries are apparent or easy to document, and will help victims of PTSD get the treatment they need as soon as possible,” said Kevin Rebeck, president, Manitoba Federation of Labour. “We can do no less for injured workers.”