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Better Together

October 29 & 30, 2012

Halifax, Nova Scotia

Marriott Harbourfront

Exploring solutions for worker health, safety and well-being


Barbara Coloroso

Barbara Coloroso is an international bestselling author and for the past 38 years an internationally recognized speaker and consultant on parenting, teaching, school discipline, positive school climate, bullying, grieving, nonviolent conflict resolution and restorative justice.

She has appeared on Oprah, CBS, NBC, ABC, CNN and NPR and has been featured in the New York Times, Time, U.S. News & World Report, Newsweek, and other national and international publications.

Her uniquely effective parenting and teaching strategies were developed through her years of training in sociology, special education, and philosophy, as well as field-tested through her experiences as a classroom teacher, laboratory school instructor, university instructor, seminar leader, volunteer in Rwanda, and mother of three grown children.

Topic: The Bully, the Bullied, and the Bystander: Breaking the Cycle of Violence in the Workplace

Listen to Barbara's Podcast:
Breaking the Cycle of Workplace Bullying (12:42 minutes)


Dan Bilsker

Dr. Dan Bilsker is a psychologist who consults to the Centre for Applied Research in Mental Health & Addiction (Simon Fraser University) and other organizations. His academic appointments are Adjunct Professor, Faculty of Health Sciences, Simon Fraser University and Clinical Assistant Professor, Faculty of Medicine, University of British Columbia. For the last 15 years, he has directed a project to disseminate supported self-management for mood disorders. Dan is a member of the Knowledge Exchange Centre of the Mental Health Commission of Canada, supporting a project to enhance the capacity of the Canadian mental health system for knowledge exchange, particularly with regard to primary care for depression and workplace mental health.

Topic: Psychological Health and Safety: An Action Guide for Employers

Birgitte Blatter

Birgitte Blatter studied Biomedical Health Sciences at the University of Nijmegen, The Netherlands, and graduated in occupational epidemiology in 1991. Subsequently she worked as a scientific researcher at the Department of Epidemiology and Biostatistics of the same university. During that time she wrote her PhD thesis based on a case-control study on spina bifida and parental occupation. From 1996 onwards, Birgitte worked as a (senior) researcher at TNO, a large contract-based research institute. She was project leader of many scientific studies and consultancy projects on musculoskeletal disorders, commissioned by the Dutch Ministry of Social Affairs, companies or sector organizations. As the Business Line Manager of 'Healthy, Vital and Safe Work' at TNO since 2011, she is responsible for the research program and the acquisition process of new research and consultancy projects. Since 2002 she has also been actively involved with Body@work Research Center on Physical Activity, Work and Health, a co-operation between TNO and VU University.

Topic: Are Psychosocial Factors Risk Factors for Musculoskeletal Symptoms and Disorders?

Listen to Birgitte's Podcast:
How Psychosocial Factors Affect Musculoskeletal Symptoms and Disorders (12:05 minutes)


Julie Fischer

Julie Fischer is a registered nurse, certified occupational health nurse, clinical leader and Wellness coordinator for The Credit Valley Hospital and Trillium Health Centre with over thirty years of experience in the Health Care Sector. As a member of the Employee Health Safety & Wellness Team, Julie has helped develop and implement numerous wellness programs including "CareWorks" which was launched in 2008. Julie has presented and co-lectured at numerous wellness conferences. She is an active member of the Ontario Healthy Workplace Coalition & the Ontario Hospital Associations Healthy Work Environment Committee.

Topic: Healthy Workplaces in Action: The CareWorks Project

Merv Gilbert

Dr. Merv Gilbert is a principal partner at Gilbert Acton Ltd., a consulting group providing assessment, training and evaluation services that enable organizations to foster healthy employees and workplace climates. He is a clinical psychologist with over thirty years of experience in direct clinical and leadership roles at regional, provincial and international levels. Dr. Gilbert is also a senior consultant and Adjunct Professor with the Centre for Applied Research in Mental Health and Addictions (CARMHA) a research centre within the Faculty of Health Sciences at Simon Fraser University. He is a primary participant in the development, evaluation and dissemination of resources for workplace mental health. Dr. Gilbert has consulted, published and lectured extensively and has skills in the development and implementation of best practice interventions, training, evaluation and knowledge translation as well as participating in program development, research and teaching. Dr. Gilbert has been published in national and international professional journals and has presented at a diverse array of forums on the importance of workplace psychological health issues for individuals and organizations. He has worked for governmental, private and public sector organizations and, most recently, has been developing tools for the Mental Health Commission of Canada.

Topic: Psychological Health and Safety: An Action Guide for Employers

Listen to Merv's Podcast:
Psychological Health and Safety (11:40 minutes)


Donna Hardaker

Donna Hardaker works at the Canadian Mental Health Association, York Region Branch in Toronto, where she delivers the award-winning Mental Health Works program. She co-developed the training workshops, drawing on her personal experience of having a mental illness while trying to stay productive at work. She has a background in adult education, mental health policy, communication skills training and human resources management.

Topic: How Healthy is Your Workplace When it Comes to Mental Health?

Kevin Kelloway

Dr. Kevin Kelloway is the Canada Research Chair in Occupational Health Psychology at Saint Mary's University, Halifax, Nova Scotia. He is also the founding and current Director of the CN Centre for Occupational Health and Safety, and was a founding principal of the Centre for Leadership Excellence. A native of New Waterford, Nova Scotia, Kevin received his Ph.D. in Organizational Psychology from Queen's University in 1991.

He is a prolific researcher, having published over 100 articles, book chapters, and technical reports. His research interests include occupational health psychology, leadership, the development and measurement of work attitudes/values, unionization, and the management of knowledge workers. 

Dr. Kelloway serves on the editorial boards of the Journal of Applied Psychology, Journal of Organizational Behavior, Journal of Occupational Health Psychology, and The Leadership and Organization Development Journal. He is active in several professional associations and is the past president of the Canadian Society for Industrial Organizational Psychology.

Topic: Towards a healthy workplace: Some new thinking about psychosocial issues at work

Listen to Kevin's Podcast:
Exploring Psychosocial Issues in the Workplace (16:09 minutes)


Gary Namie

Dr. Gary Namie is a social psychologist and widely regarded as one of North America's foremost authorities on workplace bullying. In 2007 and again in 2010, Dr. Namie wrote, and Zogby International conducted, the most frequently cited, largest-ever, scientific U.S. survey of workplace bullying. Along with his wife, Ruth, they wrote the popular books, The Bully-Free Workplace and The Bully At Work. He has more than two decades of university teaching experience in management and psychology, including the University of Southern California. He now directs the only U.S. research and education organization with a focus on bullying at work, the Workplace Bullying Institute, and also directs the national Healthy Workplace Campaign to enact state anti-bullying laws. He has given over 1,000 TV, radio, magazine and newspaper interviews for The New York Times, National Post, Maclean's, NPR, CBC and many more, as a go-to expert on workplace bullying.

Topic: Bullying At Work: Overcoming Organizational Resistance


A "Scent"-sitive Environment
This will be a scent sensitive/smoke-free event.

Forum IV is facilitated by the Canadian Centre for Occupational Health and Safety (CCOHS)
• Members of CCOHS Tripartite Council of Governors • Canadian and International Health and Safety Leaders