This week’s employee safety feature shares how Mt Seymour promotes wellness to their employees.
“There is a direct correlation between the wellness of our staff and injuries,” says Lonnie Burnett, Safety Manager at Mt Seymour in North Vancouver. Lonnie has worked at Mt Seymour for five years and meets with any staff that have been injured. “It’s not often the employees living healthy lifestyles show up in my office with a claim.”
Lonnie’s observations, have been validated in the research by Delia Roberts of Fit for Snow. Through research at numerous ski areas Delia attributed approximately 70% of ski area employee injuries to fluctuations in blood sugar. Cognition, vigilance, decision-making, speed of reflexes and reaction times are all impaired by unstable blood sugar. Stabilizing blood sugar levels, through a nutrition and wellness regiment in the Fit for Snow program, dropped the percentage of injuries to 32 percent.
To help employees at Mt Seymour connect with health and wellness resources in the community and provide them with incentives to make health choices, the Mountain hosted their second annual Staff Wellness Day. Vendors from the community were invited to set up tables in the boardroom and share about their products and service offerings that support healthy lifestyles. They had physiotherapy services, essential oils & aromatherapy, healthy pre-made food options, mental wellness support and more. Many companies provided gifts or prize draws like personal training sessions, naturopathic sessions at a local clinic, passes to the climbing gym, healthy cooking classes, float sessions and much more. Mt Seymour provided a food station (of healthy choices) and a setup a table of safety and wellness resources from go2HR and other partners. The event was very well attended, and staff are making use of the resources.
“We want our employees to be the best they can be, both in their work environment and personal life,” says Lonnie. “It’s a great part of my job to help our employees.”
Good choices are also rewarded at Mt Seymour. Through their Safety Star program, any staff member can nominate other workers for their positive actions. Each month, the nominations are brought to the safety representatives meeting and one person is selected for a prize (often a gift certificate). They also offer free staff yoga every Tuesday night to support worker’s strength, mobility and mental health.