Meet the ASP Workforce Scheduling (WFS) team by meeting some of our pets! Below you will find pictures and bios of pets that belong to schedulers: Bill, Alanna, Jamie, Cassandra, Eryn, Hardeep, Preet, Stephanie, Jaime, Brennan, Gwen and Tamara. Read the bio and match each pet to their owner to win a $50 Tim Horton’s card so you can buy coffee for your team on behalf of our team! Make sure you follow the rules below to qualify:
Psychological resilience can be defined as the ability to resist and manage stressors and to “bounce back” from stressful life events. It is vital to understand that resilience doesn’t mean being strong all the time, and never experiencing stress.
Resilience is often the ability to be aware of the psychological impact that stressors are having on you, and consciously engaging in activities that help you manage and cope with them.
The pandemic has been a test for resilience for people all over the world. It has stretched everyone’s inner and outer resources, leaving people to adapt to circumstances that were unprecedented.
Although external circumstances have felt out of control for a while, it does not mean that you cannot take control of your inner circumstances. Here are some tips to remain psychologically resilient, despite what is going on in the world:
Tip 1: Maintain a Social Support Network
It is much easier to be resilient to the challenges of work and life if you have a solid social support network. Talking about your feelings and having strong connections to a partner, family, friends, or work colleagues helps you to be more effective at facing life’s difficulties. It is important to make time for these contacts, and it is vital to keep being social even when you feel under pressure and you may not feel like it. This has been particularly important during times of lockdown or self-isolation. Technology has made it possible to maintain connections, even when we feel isolated.
Tip 2: Maintain a Third Place
An important element of being resilient is to have a “third place”. This third place should be in addition to your home (first place) and your workplace (second place). Your third place should be a physical environment where you go to relax, socialize, and/or engage in an interest/hobby. Examples of third places are health clubs/ gyms, sports clubs, coffeeshops, and so on. If you are still under lockdown restrictions your “third place” may be somewhere in nature, or a special place in your home. The location doesn’t matter, as long as you can relax and de-stress here.
Tip 3: Thinking of Others
It has often been noted that people who perform voluntary work are more resilient than those who do not engage in such an activity. This is because by engaging in voluntary work, an individual has thought about what is important to them, and then spends some time on this activity without monetary reward. It is not necessary for you to engage in voluntary work (although you may decide to do this) but thinking about what activities are important to you, and to spending some time engaging in these activities builds resilience. The pandemic showed how desperately people needed each other for support, shopping for essentials, or simply to exchange a small “hello”. What ways did you reach out to help another, or what ways would you like to, moving forward?
Tip 4: Keep a Boundary Between Your Personal & Work Life
Pressures and problems can come from both your personal and work life. One key strategy to be resilient from pressures is to keep a clear boundary between your work and personal life. You need to have techniques for “switching off ” from work so that it does not impinge on your personal life. There are a variety of methods for this; for example stopping for a coffee after leaving work before going home. Don’t forget, it’s also important to not let personal problems have an impact on work. This became a challenge throughout the pandemic as many people were forced to work from home, and the boundary between work and home became blurred.
Tip 5: Know Your Early Signs of Stress
Resilience is not about being strong all the time and never feeling pressure or stress, it’s about knowing when you are starting to feel stressed and using techniques to help keep in control e.g. deep breathing, exercising more, and talking to family and friends about how you are feeling. To help with this it is useful to be aware of what your early signs of stress are. Early signs tend to occur in four areas:
Generally, more people have some physical signs when they are starting to feel stressed. This can be headaches, pain in the neck/shoulders or digestion problems.
When under stress, people can feel angry, frustrated and/ or low in mood.
When under pressure, we tend not to think effectively so we can become indecisive, or we become more forgetful or experience concentration difficulties.
Behaviour can change; we can lose our temper more frequently or have trouble sleeping.
Tip 6: Physical Exercise
As a rule, the healthier you are physically, the easier it is to be resilient to stressors. One important way of maintaining your resilience is to be active, focusing in particular on cardiovascular exercises and body stretches. The key is to do some exercise little and often, for example walking, swimming, cycling, or playing sports. It is very important to maintain an exercise regime when you are feeling particularly stressed, and if possible to do slightly more exercise than usual to help you cope with the difficulties. This is especially true when working from home, or feeling stuck in the same place for long periods.
Tip 7: Deep Breathing
Deep breathing is one of the easiest relaxation techniques to master, and it is also one of the most effective in helping you remain calm and resilient. Slow, deep (diaphragmatic) breathing slows down your heart rate, lowers blood pressure and reduces tension in the muscles. The simplest method for practising deep breathing is as follows:
- Sit comfortably in a chair with good posture, and both feet flat on the floor. Close your eyes and place your left palm on your stomach and your right palm on your chest. Now breathe slowly in through the nose, and out through the nose without holding your breath at any point.
- Try and expand your stomach as you breathe in and contract your stomach as you breathe out. Try to breathe so that only your left palm moves and not your right. Your chest and shoulders should not move as you breathe, only your stomach. All the time you should be relaxed and concentrating on breathing slowly.
Tip 8: Reduce Self-Criticism
One habit many people have which, reduces their resilience, is that they are too critical of themselves. Self- criticism often occurs as a voice in our head (sometimes called an internal monologue) which is critical of our thoughts, feelings, and behaviour. Something that is often linked to self-criticism is our tendency to be too critical of others. One method to help us be less self-critical, and therefore more resilient, is to consciously try to become less critical and negative towards others.
Tip 9: Personal Organizational System
Increasingly in modern life we have a multitude of activities and tasks to keep track of—both at work and in our personal life. Managing all these tasks can be stressful. So, to be resilient, it is important to have an organizational system that prevents us feeling overwhelmed by the demands placed upon us. Specifically, your organizational system should achieve two major elements which help you maintain your resilience: Keep your to-dos “outside of your head”. In other words, you should not rely on your memory to trigger when you should do your actions, it is your organizational system that reminds you when to do things. The less you rely on your memory, the better. It is always vital to have a clear distinction between tasks which are urgent (that is time dependent and must be performed now, such as answering a ringing phone) and those which are important but can be dealt with at your own pace. Resilient people tend to spend more time on actions which are not urgent but are important. When we are under pressure and stressed, we tend to focus on the urgent, unimportant tasks.
Tip 10: Resilient Thinking
A vital element of being resilient is how you perceive and think about the challenges that life throws at you. Resilient individuals tend to be good at keeping stressors in perspective so that they are not overwhelmed by such stressors. Equally, resilient individuals focus on how they can solve their problems or make their problems easier in some way.
Resilient thinking tries to be as creative as possible and to focus on solution and/or management of a problem not on the problem itself and the feelings it generates. The analogy of resilient thinking that is often used is: “When you have fallen into a hole, your thinking should be how do you climb out of the hole—not how you fell into the hole, or how unlucky you are to be in the hole.”
A very useful technique for maintaining resilient thinking is to keep a Gratitude Journal. Every day, you should write in this diary three things in your life that you are grateful for. The key is that every day you should come up with three new things to be grateful for. By carrying out this activity you are training your mind to focus on positive things which in turn helps you be more resilient.
In your busy life, it may not be possible to implement all of these tips, but always try to think creatively and it may be possible to combine two or more tips together e.g., playing tennis with your partner and/or children. This will enable you to maintain your social support network, spend time on an activity which is important to you—and it will give you some exercise.
This article was written in collaboration with Colin Grange, UK Clinical Director © LifeWorks 2022.
What is Considered Workplace Harassment?
Workplace Harassment includes:
- Verbally abusive behaviour
- Yelling, insults, ridicule, name calling, and/or jokes/ remarks that demean, intimidate, or offend
- Workplace pranks, vandalism, bullying and/or hazing
- Gossiping or spreading malicious rumours
- Displaying or circulating offensive pictures or materials in print or electronic form
- Repeating offensive or intimidating phone calls or inappropriate advances, suggestions or requests
- Providing only demeaning or trivial tasks in place of normal job duties
- Undermining a worker’s efforts by setting impossible goals, with short deadlines and deliberately withholding information that would enable a person to do their job
- Sabotaging someone else’s work
What is NOT Considered Workplace Harassment?
Reasonable action or conduct by an employer, manager or supervisor that is part of his or her normal work function would not normally be considered workplace harassment.
- Changes in work assignment or schedule
- Measures to correct performance deficiencies
- Imposing discipline for workplace infractions
- Requesting medical documents in support of an absence from work
- Enforcement of dress code
- Difference of opinion or minor disagreements between co-workers would also not generally be considered workplace harassment
How to Report?
Reporting How to Bring Forward Concerns/Complaints under this Policy
- Employees can contact a Manager, Supervisor, Lead, Site Supervisor, Patrol Supervisor, or Human Resources representative
- If the employee’s complaint is against their own supervisor or manager, then they may escalate their complaint directly to Human Resources
- This procedure applies even where employees believe that someone not employed by ASP is in violation of this policy
Reporting Concerns and/or Complaints
A claim of a breach of this Policy may be made by an employee in writing or verbally.
Management to Notify Human Resources through ASP’s incident reporting system (i-sight) If a manager receives a complaint or becomes aware that a person in the workplace may have acted contrary to this Policy, the manager must promptly report the complaint or incident to Human Resources.
Note: If the allegations are against Human Resources, the manager can escalate the complaint as appropriate (i.e., report to the department head).
- Any reported allegations of harassment, violence, discrimination, or reprisal will be investigated fairly, promptly, thoroughly, and impartially by the Human Resources department or another appropriate party.
- The investigator will interview the complainant, the respondent, all potential witnesses (where possible) and any other individual who the investigator deems to be relevant to the complaint.
- Upon completion of the investigation, the complainant and respondent will be informed of the results of the investigation.
- If the complaint is substantiated, persons found to have engaged in a violation of this Policy will be issued appropriate disciplinary action up to and including termination of employment for cause.
- If the investigation reveals that an individual has brought a concern forward in bad faith, the individual may be subject to discipline, up to and including dismissal for cause.
All records of the investigation will be kept confidential. The investigation documents, including this report should not be disclosed unless necessary to investigate an incident or complaint of workplace harassment or violence, take corrective action or otherwise as required by law.
ASP Canine division is so fortunate to have such a diverse and talented group of members involved in a variety of activities and private ventures.
Every handler brings their own experiences and expertise with them, benefiting all of us here.
I would like to focus on one of our members in this article, Anne-Marie Paré, who is currently handling EDD Ylva and is based out of Quebec City. Anne-Marie is very active in the dog sport world where she competes and trains both in IGP dog sport as well as another sport called “Canicross”.
For those of you that have not heard of Canicross, it is basically a cross country race conducted with your dog. The competitors are connected by bungee cord to their dogs’ harness, and then they run a timed course. The course can range anywhere from 2km to 15km, but usually falls into the 4-5 km distance.
Although the sport is popular in Europe it is relatively new to Canada and was officially introduced in Quebec in 2006. Since then, it has steadily grown. The sport is recognized by an international Dog Sport organization (FMBB) which organizes dozens of dog sports and 1000’s of competitors.
Anne-Marie has been involved in CaniCross for the past 7 years. She has quickly risen to the top of this sport, first qualifying for the world championships in 2020 with her first dog Zimbabwe. Then, along came COVID and a serious car accident, side lining Anne-Marie with 4 cracked vertebrae.
After a lengthy recovery with physio, Anne-Marie trained for a comeback and has become Canada’s first representative for the FMBB World championships to be held in Greece in May.
Anne-Marie and her running partner, 2-year-old Belgium Teverun “Jigsaw,” will compete over 2 days, running a 2km course on the first day and a 5 km race on the second day.
The snow is melting in Northern Ontario, and we are all looking forward to summer. The Sudbury airport is seeing more passengers. As well, the Porter Airlines deal with Air Transat promises better connections to points eastward and beyond for YSB passengers in 2022. It is an exciting time for the airport.
ASP Highlights at the Sudbury Airport Include:
• We played a major role in assisting the client with completing a formal RAIC Audit for Transport Canada. ASP plays an integral role administrating the YSB Pass Office.
• Five new guards have been onboarded to fill open roles left by two guards leaving ASP and one guard stepping back from full time to casual hours.
• A new testing and audit program is being implemented to keep all guards current with the clients Post Orders and Standard Operating Procedures.
• The guards requested moving to continental shifts at YSB to achieve more meaningful time off and better manage open shifts. This was implemented in late fall of 2021 and the satisfaction rate is high and has also allowed overtime rates in excess of 30% to be reduced to below 3%.
In respecting International Women’s Day this year and every year, we are exceptionally proud of the contributions women make to the successful security operations here at Pearson Airport. We have many examples of outstanding women who contribute to the daily operations of ASP Security at Pearson Airport. They do so with the highest of integrity, professionalism, and humility. One such employee is Suryya Shafi, Access Control Officer TPIA.
Suryya has been employed in security at Pearson Airport since 1994. That is an incredible 28-year career here at the airport. Suryya has worked with 3 different security companies since starting her career at TPIA.
Beginning her career as a Screening Officer, Suryya was in the first class for that role at the airport. She has spent the longest period of this with ASP as her employer, she is now in her 18th year with us. In fact, Suryya is our most senior employee.
Prior to coming to Canada, Suryya was the teacher, headmistress and principal of a private school for 27 years. She loved being involved in the education field, showing leadership and helping her community. Suryya states that she has also enjoyed her career at the airport, and it has been a good job and place to work. She has enjoyed meeting so many people, made many friends with great coworkers and has marvelled at the growth development of the airport.
Suryya states, “After 9/11 the world of travel and airport work changed forever. I really feel and believe that it has become safer for employees and travellers because of better security measures and screening practices.”
When asked what she felt was the biggest contribution made by women in the security industry is, she stated, “We play a positive role in security. In security there is always a constant need to keep improving and women play a big role in this area. They are naturally stronger in nurturing, more disciplined and are strong administrators.
Qualities that help security companies like ASP remain strong.” Like so many others, the pandemic hit Suryya hard psychologically. Not being able to come to work and do the work she loved made her feel left out and slowed her down. She is used to being active and involved every day. She states that through the positive support and encouragement from the ASP management team and her close family, she was able to push through and keep going, returning to work when she was ready.
Suryya is happy to be back at work, doing what she loves to do, and says her future looks bright.
Thank you for your long and celebrated career here at TPIA and with ASP Security. You are an inspiration to us all with your dedication, positive outlook on life, humility, and kindness. Happy International Women’s Day to you and all the women who show us the right way through work and life.
Hello ASP! I hope your Spring is coming along nicely! At YYC, the training and the passenger volume are increasing! We have some exciting opportunities in store for the family here in Calgary; the airport is looking for people to staff some new positions in both operations and across different contracts. I’m certain that in the very near future, we will have the opportunity to show our client that we can gracefully expand into wider ranging roles at the airport. To our YYC based staff, this is only going to become the reality if you continue to keep up the excellent job that you all have shown you are capable of.
Some developments here include the transition to team based KPIs. The client is interested to see the way that each team does the job—that’s right everyone—the competition is on! Each team will be analyzed for the number of alarms, the quality of the data and reports made, the volume of the work being completed, and more. This is the time to show that your team deserves the top spot, and maybe even take home some fun incentives! First and foremost, make sure that the information taken down in your activity reports is accurate and shows off our professionalism.
I’m also super excited about the move toward in person training! In the coming days we will have de-escalation training, continuing AVOP training, SOC training and more!
On that note, we have a new supervisor coming on board, Robin Yorga, who has gone through ITP, Basic, Post familiarization, SOC training, and will begin AVOP and Supervisor training before the end of March. Three cheers for making it through all that training in one go! I’m also happy to announce that our SOC Operator, Samson Beddall, has taken a position with the client as an Airport Operations Control Specialist. YYC is getting some talent and ASP wishes you all the best, Sam!
The entire team here at YYC is growing in their ability and it has been recognized throughout the wider airport. All I want to say is this: let’s keep the positive momentum going and keep on outdoing ourselves! Until next time, take care of yourselves!
I want to take this opportunity to congratulate our Access Control Officer Moises Raguindin and Security Specialist Daveshwar Bharose for receiving an Eye on Safety award from the GTAA.
To support the vision of zero injures, the GTAA established the Eye on Safety Recognition Awards Program. These awards increase awareness on the importance of safety and security at Toronto Pearson and show their appreciation for airport employees who have gone above and beyond. On Feb 20, 2022, Moises and Daveshwar noticed a vehicle immersed in flames at the Terminal parking lot and immediately notified GTAA emergency services. After calling the emergency in, both made sure no one was in the vehicle and started to clear the area.
Once the area was clear, they quickly located the nearest fire extinguishers and started to extinguish the fire until GTAA emergency services arrived on the scene. Moises and Daveshwar, your work and dedication is outstanding – we really appreciate you going above and beyond!
We are well on our way through 2022 and we are beginning to see a change for the positive for business operations. Below is a focus on activity we have had in each of our operations:
Pearson Airport Security
- ASP is very excited to have been successful in retaining the security contract for GTAA for 7 years.
- GTAA has expanded the face mask enforcement project by adding 10 additional Posts.
- In January, GTAA started the temporary foreign worker vacation initiative again.
- We have been made aware that the Arrival testing program has been extended until the end of April.
- GTAA and ASP rolled out RAP+2.0, which is still at the testing stage.
- A detailed I-spring module was created for the British Airway contract.
Calgary Airport Security
- We have had a change of management at YYC, with the sudden departure of Matthew Szajkowski, we are please to announce that Kevin Hepburn will be the interim Operations Manager.
- Welcome Kevin Hepburn. Kevin has transferred from our Pearson operation with a vast experience in airport operations. Notwithstanding recently being a Duty Manager at Billy Bishop Airport and prior to that was a Safety and Security Manager at the GTAA.
- We had a very successful job-fair in Calgary and are in the process of getting new staff onboarded
- We have an aggressive training plan for the start of this year. This will cover training from the onboarding of new Access Control staff, all the way through Terminal Patrollers, Supervisors, SOC, and AVOP.
Sudbury Airport Security
We assisted with and completed a TC audit report for the Pass Office.
• The Pass office hours have been extended and it is now open 5 days a week.
• 5 more employees were added to the schedule.
• Thanks to the team, we have seen a great improvement on the completion of reports. There is still some improvement to be made, so keep up the good work.
• YSB has had a significant impact of Omicron – Air carriers changed and cancelled some of their flights, resulting in YSB has reduced terminal hours.
We are all looking forward to the imminent return of life back to ‘normality’. It has been a challenging 2 years and everyone – clients, valued ASP employees, and
the travelling public alike cannot wait to recommence travelling again.
This February 2022, Our Diversity and Inclusion Committee hosted yet another successful Black History Month Roundtable. As the second annual event in this space, the roundtable focused on building on the discussions from the previous year’s event, which was fantastically hosted by Melicia Gregory, our D&I Employee Chair.
Last year’s roundtable focused on the lived experiences of Black-identifying employees at ASP and coming into awareness of the histories, stories, and lingering discrimination faced by Black Canadians. This year, hosted by our newly appointed D&I Employer Chair, Keba Walters, the conversation furthered the discussion regarding the experiences specific to ASP, how ASP management views these topics, and what their responsibility is to provide a safe and equitable space for their Black employees.
We received a lot of feedback regarding bias, and how micro-aggressions can come from various communities, whether it’s intentional or not. Overall, it was another year of valuable learning and togetherness.
The Diversity and Inclusion Committee works to ensure that these roundtables are not only outlets for employees of protected groups to share their experiences, but are also platforms to uplift our employees and create action. Whether you’re interested in sharing or simply interested in learning about the experiences and lives of your fellow ASP coworkers, we encourage all employees to join us. The goal is to create a better ASP for all.
What’s Up Next in Diversity & Inclusion?
Stay tuned for details about Asian heritage Month! We will be welcoming employees to share their experiences from all over the Asian diaspora. Come to share and learn about history, holidays, favourite foods, similarities and differences between cultures, and to celebrate our diverse Asian community here at ASP. See you soon!