Dr. Joti Samra is a national thought leader on issues relating to mental health. She is Program Lead for the online Centre for Psychological Health Sciences at the University of Fredericton and a member of the Global Expert Panel for WellteQ. She is an innovator in the area of psychological health and safety in the workplace, and has been the lead on a number of pivotal national workplace projects that have contributed to policy change in Canada. Born and raised in the Greater Vancouver area of British Columbia, Dr. Samra holds a Ph.D. in clinical-forensic psychology from Simon Fraser University and is a registered clinical psychologist with the College of Psychologists of British Columbia.
Dr. Samra pursues a full spectrum of research, consulting, and educational activities in the field of workplace health. She is the lead developer of Guarding Minds @ Work (GM@W) : A Workplace Guide to Psychological Safety and Health, an innovative online resource used by employers to address psychosocial threats in the work environment. Commissioned by the Great-West Life Centre for Mental Health in the Workplace (the Centre), the GM@W resources include evidence-based psychosocial risk assessment surveys, response strategies, and response evaluation tools. She is also the principal developer of Managing Emotions, a set of online, interactive assessment and training resources that strengthen the interpersonal competence and emotional intelligence skills of managers, also commissioned by the Centre. Dr. Samra is Founder & Principal of MyWorkplaceHealth, which offers a comprehensive suite of clinical, consulting and training services in workplace mental health.
Dr. Samra has additionally been involved as an expert advisor on a number of provincial and national steering committees in the area of workplace psychological health, including being a founding member of the Technical Committee that developed Canada’s National Standard for Psychological Health & Safety in the Workplace (CSA Z1003/BNQ9700) – the first Standard of its kind in the world. Recently, Dr. Samra led an extensive research investigation on the evolution of Canadian workplace mental health strategies and initiatives from 2007-2017. This extensive investigation – commissioned once again by the Centre – revealed and summarized predominantly positive developments that have occurred across the workplace mental health landscape in Canada, as well as some areas with room for improvement.
Dr. Samra has created a breadth of evidence-based resources for individuals and organizations in the areas of mood disorders, suicidality, chronic health conditions, emotional intelligence, and workplace psychological health and safety. A dynamic and engaging speaker, Dr. Samra presents her work extensively at the invitation of public and private sector organizations, and is regularly called upon by provincial and national print, radio and TV media to comment on issues relating to human behaviour. Past speaking/keynote topics have included emotional intelligence (EI), workplace mental health, the National Standard of Canada for Psychological Health and Safety in the Workplace, transformational leadership, and mental health for women. The range of events at which Dr. Samra has presented include venues such as the Canadian Mental Health Association’s Bottom Line Conference, the Better Workplace Conference, and the BC Ministry of Health. Dr. Samra has additionally been interviewed by a range of media outlets, such as CTV, Global, CBC News, News 1130, and CKNW, and has written for a wide range of scholarly, professional, and popular publications, including a weekly “Ask a Health Expert”column for the Globe and Mail.
Based out of the Mainland Medical Clinic in downtown Vancouver, Dr. Samra’s clinical practice involves working with clients experiencing a range of life difficulties, including, but not limited to: mood and anxiety disorders, eating disorders, borderline personality disorder, workplace stress and conflict, and chronic pain. To assist her clients, Dr. Samra is trained in Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT), Dialectical Behaviour Therapy (DBT), Interpersonal Therapy (IPT), and John Gottman’s model for marital therapy. She also has expertise in individual & couples treatment; cognitive & learning assessments; independent medical evaluations; and return-to-work facilitations.
Dr. Samra is a recipient of the Canadian Psychological Association’s New Researcher Award (2002) and the British Columbia Psychological Association’s Advancement of the Profession of Psychology Award (2011). She is also past President of the British Columbia Psychological Association, and past Chair of the BC Psychologically Healthy Workplace Awards Committee.
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