Saskatchewan’s New Democrats tabled a bill Thursday that calls for presumed Workers’ Compensation Board (WCB) coverage for anyone with work-related post-traumatic stress disorder, regardless of his or her profession.
The bill was tabled in front of a gallery of first responders, including advanced care paramedic, Paul Hills.
“This isn’t something that happens every once in a while,” Hills said.
“This is something we all deal with in small amounts even on a day to day basis.”
Currently, the WCB examines the background of people applying for PTSD coverage, which the NDP says can be a long and difficult process. Thursday’s bill would make a doctor’s diagnosis the only requirement for a worker to receive coverage.
But the Minister Responsible for Saskatchewan Workers’ Compensation Board, Don Morgan, said the Saskatchewan government is working to study other provinces’ approaches to presumed coverage. The government will then introduce its own PTSD bill.
“There’s a variety of different things that are taking place in different provinces,” Morgan said.
“Our intention is over the summer is to do a more careful analysis and likely introduce a bill in the fall.”
NDP health critic Danielle Chartier said she is looking forward to reviewing the Sask. Party legislation.
“I’m hopeful that the minister will address the issue in a way that accepts that all employees, all workers have the chance to be exposed to traumatic events on the job and need presumptive coverage.”