Chronic mental stress update: IAVGO publishes the details on the 94% denial rate

Last week I published a post (Ontario: open for harassment) commenting on the revelation, in the Toronto Star, that during the first five months that the chronic mental stress the legislation was in effect, the WSIB denied 94% of CMS claims.

The Star article was based on information from an internal WSIB audit of adjudication under its chronic mental stress policy.

That internal audit was obtained by IAVGO Community Legal Clinic as part of a freedom of information request.

IAVGO has now made the WSIB’s full audit document available on its website, along with an excellent analysis of its contents, written by IAVGO lawyer Maryth Yachnin: “Adjudication of Chronic Mental Stress Injuries by the WSIB: A Farce, But We’re not Laughing.

The details of the audit are just as disturbing as the headline number of denials. As IAVGO explains, the audit shows that, in the great majority of cases, the WSIB is doing little, if any, investigation of circumstances that gave rise to the claim – or even gathering basic medical evidence.

Indeed, the details of the audit thoroughly justify IAVGO’s conclusion that:

“The WSIB is not treating chronic mental stress claims as real injuries. It is failing to do basic investigations, gather documents, or investigate complex workplace risk factors for mental health injuries. The result is the near-total exclusion of workers with mental stress injuries from health care, return to work and compensation support when they are hurt on the job.”

I encourage you to visit IAVGO’s website and read IAVGO’s analysis, and obtain a copy of the WSIB’s audit, for yourself!

Ontario: open for harassment

This week the Toronto Star revealed an internal WSIB audit showing that, in the first five months of the year, the WSIB denied 94% of claims for chronic mental stress.

That’s a bombshell revelation. Without urgent reform, the WSIB will turn a significant human rights victory for Ontario workers into a major step backward, leaving them more vulnerable than ever to harassment in the workplace. Continue reading