By Steven Scott, GEICO

Defensive driving starts before you leave home; check weather conditions, and if you know it’s going to be a wet, snowy or icy commute, make sure you leave yourself enough time to make that trip carefully instead of feeling rushed during your commute and driving too fast for the conditions.

1. Plan Ahead

Take extra time when it comes to making tight turns, like when you merge on and off of highways ramps. You should be mentally ready to make those turns extra slow. Try and stick to a lane with a shoulder next to it, so you have somewhere to move in an emergency.

2. Always Scan Your Surroundings

“That car came out of nowhere!” If you’ve ever heard someone talk about what happened during a motor vehicle accident, those words are uttered all too often. It’s impossible to see everything that’s around you all the time. That’s why it’s important to continuously check your mirrors and thoroughly scan intersections well before you pass through them. Defensive driving means getting in the habit of taking a quick peek down intersecting streets as you approach them so you can avoid being T-boned by a careless driver not paying attention to their red light. The ultimate goal is to always anticipate where vehicles will be a few seconds later so you can respond quickly.

3. Brake Early

Defensive driving means leaving a little more space between you and the cars in front you than you anticipate needing — and brake early. In fact, it’s always a good idea to slow down a little sooner, especially in slippery conditions. Expect that it will take two or three times as long to come to a complete stop after making the decision to apply the brakes. This gives you more room to stop if someone ahead of you brakes suddenly and gives people behind you even more of a heads up that you are stopping when they see your brake lights.

4. Never Go On the Offensive

Defensive driving is actually the opposite of “road rage.” Don’t let other drivers’ aggressive tendencies rub off on you. Road rage often starts with one person’s hostility and causes a ripple effect on nearby drivers. You’ll be surprised at how often things can get heated on the road simply because someone gets cut off and then goes out of their way to “get back at” the other driver. But there are several ways to avoid road rage. Just play it safe — play it cool. insurance/7-ways-to-avoid-road-rage/

5. Don’t Get Distracted

Defensive driving isn’t only about being reactive. It’s also about being proactive. One of the best ways you can avoid a collision on the road is by paying full attention at all times. Don’t engage in activities that take your eyes and attention off the road. Using your smartphone is a big one, and this distraction goes well beyond just texting — music, social media, and surfing the web all take your attention away from the road.

By Laurel Woodhouse, Health and Safety Manager

As a worker, did you know that you have three important rights? These include:

  1. The right to know about hazards at work and the right to get information, supervision and instruction to protect your health and safety on the job.
  2. The right to participate in identifying and solving workplace health and safety problems either through a health and safety representative or a worker member of a joint health and safety committee.
  3. The right to refuse work that you believe is dangerous to your health and safety or that of any other worker in the workplace.

The Right to Know:

Workers have the right to know about any potential hazards to which they may be exposed in the workplace. The primary way that workers can become aware of hazards in the workplace is to be informed and instructed on how to protect their health and safety, including health and safety related to the use of machinery, equipment, working conditions, processes and hazardous substances.

The employer can enable the worker’s right to know in various ways, such as making sure they get:

  • Information about the hazards in the work they are doing
  • Training to do the work in a healthy and safe way
  • Competent supervision to stay healthy and safe

The Right to Participate:

Workers have the right to be part of the process of identifying and resolving workplace health and safety concerns. This right is expressed through direct worker participation in health and safety in the workplace and/ or through worker membership on joint health and safety committees or through worker health and safety representatives.

Workers have the right to refuse work that they believe is dangerous to either their own health and safety or that of another worker in the workplace. For example, workers may refuse work if they believe their health and safety is endangered by any equipment they are to use or by the physical conditions of the workplace. The worker should explain to their employer why they believe the work is unsafe. Although they cannot not leave the work site, they can ensure they are in a safe place. If the worker and employer disagree, the Safety Worker Representative is called to assist with determining controls. All parties must agree that the work is safe to continue. The jurisdiction of the work will determine how the right to refuse is applied. All jurisdictions in Canada have adopted the philosophy of the Internal Responsibility System (IRS) where everyone in the workplace is responsible for their own safety and for the safety of co-workers. The IRS puts in place an employee-employer partnership in ensuring a safe and disease-free workplace.

By Laurel Woodhouse, Health and Safety Manager

Who We Are?

LifeSpeak is a leading platform for mental health and wellbeing, available whenever and wherever users need specialized information and guidance on problems that affect their daily life.

What We Do?

LifeSpeak helps employees thrive so they can stay focused, healthy, and productive.

For you to develop a stable, healthy mindset no matter what life throws at you, LifeSpeak has gathered its top mental health specialists to offer you useful resources, tactics, and tools.


Access to all programming while also enabling users to download videos for offline viewing, stream podcasts, participate in live ‘Ask the Expert’ webchats and manage their account, right from their phone.


This web-based service offers anonymous access to hundreds of short videos. Our full range of formats includes videos, podcasts, tip sheets, quizzes, and more.


LifeSpeak empowers people to take action before a life challenge or issue becomes critical. It’s a proactive approach to mental health and wellbeing.

Download our app in the appstore or googleplay:

By Laurel Woodhouse, Manager, Health and Safety

ASP Employees! Our final participation rate for the 2022 Health & Safety Perception Survey was 40%. We thank you for both your participation and your honesty. Your feedback is an invaluable tool for this organization’s success.

Thank you to all those employees who participated in our 2022 ASP Health & Safety Perception Survey which closed on March 30, 2022.

What’s Next?

1. Results Overview:
Within the next month, our leadership will be following up with their employees and sharing their department specific results.

2. Detailed Results:
Within the next two months, our leadership team will create focus groups made up of employees from each department. The goal of these focus groups will be to brainstorm an action plan focused on improving the two lowest scores in each department. We hope to see these areas improve when we conduct this survey again in 2023.

Interpreting your scoreChecking your score below along with the suggestions for next steps. The
levels in the visual above will guide you in interpreting your final score on a
0 4 scale.
Level 1Final score is less than 2.
Your work in health & safety needs attention and improvement. Contact H&S team for guidance on developing an action plan.
Level 2Final score is less than 3.
Specific health and safety practices at your site need some improvement. The lower scored items should be a focus area for you. Review your practices and consult with H&S team for guidance in developing an action plan.
Level 3Final score is equal to or greater than 3 but less than 4.
You are performing well overall. The lower scored items should be a focus area for you. Continue to strive for excellence with continuous collaboration work.
Level 4Final score is 4.
A score of 4 indicates that your safety culture is currently functioning at an optimal level. This is the result of continuous, collaborative work. Well done keep doing what you are doing.

Thanks again for your participation! Your feedback will help make our organization a great place to work.

Safety Culture Assessment Survey Results

The table below shows a detailed report of your Safety Assessment Survey results.

The percentage column indicates the percentage of employees who chose “ Most or all of the time” as their answer.

At my site, employees work safely even when the manager or supervisor is not around?87%
At my site, incident investigations are focused on fixing the problem, not laying blame?80%
At my site, safety is as important as the clients’ needs?86%
At my site, do all employees have the information needed to work safely?84%
At my site, the ASP employees responsible for safety (managers and supervisors) have the authority to
make changes they deem necessary?
At my site, ASP employees are recognized for working safely?75%
At my site, do all ASP employees have the tools/equipment to work safely?77%
At my site, ASP management is visibly/actively involved in the safety?71%
At my site, communication is open, and ASP employees are encouraged to voice concerns and make
At my site, there is a trained first aid attendant available at all times?56%
At my site, ASP employees are encouraged to report near misses (close calls) and hazards?81%
At my site, ASP management applies the same safety rules to everyone?86%
Average score March 202278%

By Laurel Woodhouse, Manager, Health and Safety

ASP Health and Safety participated in 2022 NAOSH week at Toronto Pearson International Airport from May 2- 6, 2022.

North American Occupational Safety and Health (NAOSH) Week

This year marks 25 years of bringing safety and health awareness to employers, employees, and the public. To celebrate, from May 2 to May 6, 2022, Airport employers shared tips and info on how we all can help keep our airport, passengers, and employees safe. Airport employees were also able to participate in online contests for a chance to win prizes!

Topics for the week

  • Monday: Day 1 – Airport Safety Programs
  • Tuesday: Day 2 – Reporting and Recognition
  • Wednesday: Day 3 – Emergency Planning and Preparedness
  • Thursday: Day 4 – Safe Movement of People, Planes and Passengers
  • Friday: Day 5 – Foreign Object Debris Safety

I look forward to seeing you at this event next year.

By Laurel Woodhouse, Health and Safety Manager

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.

By Laurel Woodhouse, Health and Safety Manager

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
  • Bullying
  • 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.

Examples include:

  • 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).


  1. 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.
  2. 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.
  3. Upon completion of the investigation, the complainant and respondent will be informed of the results of the investigation.
  4. 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.
  5. 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.

By Laurel Woodhouse, Manager, Health and Safet

What Should You Know When Buying Footwear for Work?

Good footwear should have the following qualities:

  • The shoe must grip the heel firmly.
  • The forepart must allow freedom of movement for the toes.
  • The shoe must have a fastening across the instep to prevent the foot from slipping when walking.
  • The heel should be not more than 60 mm (about 2.5 inches), and the heel should not be lower than the ball of the foot. (From CSA Z195:14 (R2019) Protective footwear)

People buying footwear for work should take the following advice:

  • Do not expect that footwear which is too tight will stretch with wear.
  • Have both feet measured when buying shoes? Feet normally differ in size. • Buy shoes to fit the bigger foot.
  • Buy shoes late in the afternoon when feet are likely to be swollen to their maximum size. • Ask a doctor’s advice if properly fitting shoes are not available.
  • Consider using shock-absorbing insoles where the job requires walking or standing on hard floors.

When selecting footwear, one should remember that tight socks or stockings can cramp the toes as much as poorly fitted shoes. Wrinkled socks, or socks that are too large or too small, can cause blisters. White woollen or cotton socks may be recommended since coloured socks cause skin allergies in some people.

Type of Footwear Appropriate for Cold Conditions

Selection should be made to suit the specific working condition. Working outdoors in cold weather poses a special requirement on selecting the proper footwear. “Normal” protective footwear is not designed for cold weather. “Insulated” footwear may give little temperature protection in the sole if it has no insulation there. Loss of heat through steel toe caps (commonly blamed for increased heat loss) is insignificant.

Foot protection against cold weather can be resolved by:

  • Insulating the legs by wearing thermal undergarments.
  • Wearing insulating overshoes over work footwear.
  • Wearing insulating muffs around the ankles and over the top of the footwear

How to care for your feet?

  • Feet are subject to a great variety of skin and toenail disorders. Workers can avoid many of them by following simple rules of foot care:
  • Wash feet daily with soap, rinse thoroughly and dry, especially between the toes.
  • Trim toenails straight across and not too short. Do not cut into the corners.

Wear clean socks or stockings and change them daily.

Some feet sweat more than others and are more prone to athlete’s foot. Again, following a few simple guidelines may help:

  • Select shoes made of leather or canvas – not synthetic materials.
  • Keep several pairs of shoes on hand and rotate shoes daily to allow them to air out.
  • Use foot powder.

If problems persist, see a doctor or health care specialist. In cases of persisting ingrown toenails, calluses, corns, fungal infection, and more serious conditions such as flat feet and arthritis, see a doctor and follow the doctor’s advice

By Debbie Ciccotelli, Vice President, Strategic Initiatives

The fourth wave of COVID-19 that public health experts warned us about for months has arrived and it is being referred to as the ‘pandemic of the unvaccinated”. Each wave of the COVID-19 pandemic raises different levels of public health and personal challenges. Public health authorities have indicated that the highly contagious Delta Variant is driving the fourth wave and that they are seeing an increase in numbers, which is mostly amongst the unvaccinated. The Delta variant has prolonged the pandemic, made daily life more difficult to navigate and has turned back the clock on our collective plans to return to a relatively normal life. Experts unanimously agree that people who aren’t vaccinated — including children under 12, are most at risk in this wave of the pandemic.

The good news is that millions of Canadians have now been vaccinated. As of September 16, 2021, provinces and territories have administered over 54 million doses of COVID-19 vaccines, with the latest data indicating that over 85% of people aged 12 years or older have received at least one dose of COVID-19 vaccine and over 79% are now fully vaccinated. Evidence demonstrates that full vaccination (2 doses) combined with continued public health measures provides substantial protection. As we head into the fall, it will be important to have as many eligible people as possible fully vaccinated as quickly as possible to protect ourselves and others, including those with compromised immune systems or children who are not eligible – especially as cases rise within younger populations. Because children can’t be vaccinated, it’s especially important that those around them are. It is important to ensure that information related to covid-19 vaccines comes from a reliable source, therefore please see the link to the government of Canada article

Let’s Make the Fourth Wave the Final Wave!

What Can We Do?

  • Get vaccinated – protect yourself and others
  • Be aware of risks associated with different settings
  • Wear face masks indoors – properly worn face masks are your best defense against the virus
  • Continue to wear a mask in busy outdoor areas like campgrounds, playgrounds and dog parks
  • Maintain social distancing – Health Canada still encourages us to minimize close contact with others.
  • Keep hands and surfaces clean
  • If you feel sick, even with just a sore throat, you should stay home and self-isolate if you have symptoms
  • Continue to avoid non-essential travel
  • Socialize outdoors whenever possible
  • Avoid crowded indoor spaces with poor ventilation —especially with the unvaccinated.

Take Care of Your Mental and Physical
Health by:

  • Adjusting your expectations based on what is in your control
  • Have a backup plan if something is not available (school/daycare, gym, etc.)
  • Take advantage of nice weather and spend time outdoors
  • Acknowledge that pandemic fatigue is real and make use of our EAP (LifeWorks program) if you are experiencing mental health concerns like anxiety, stress, or depression

Collectively, our actions can help prevent the spread of COVID-19 and keep our families, friends, and co-workers safe. As the pandemic drags on through a fourth, intense wave, front line hospital staff are running on empty tanks, and we owe it to them to take precautionary measures and make it through this wave without overburdening our healthcare system.

By Laurel Woodhouse, Manager Health and Safety

Why Get Vaccinated for COVID-19?

Vaccines Work

Scientific and medical evidence show that vaccination can help protect you against COVID-19. Studies are also showing that vaccinated people may have less severe illness if they do become ill from COVID-19.

Vaccines Are Safe

Only vaccines that are proven to be safe, effective and of high quality are authorized for use in Canada. The COVID-19 vaccines have been rigorously tested during their development and then carefully reviewed by Health Canada. The vaccines cannot give you COVID-19 because they don’t contain the virus that causes it. The vaccines also cannot change your DNA.

Types of Vaccines

mRNA vaccines provide instructions to your cells for how to make a coronavirus protein. This protein will trigger an immune response that will help to protect you against COVID-19.

Viral vector vaccines use a virus that’s been made harmless to produce coronavirus proteins in your body without causing disease. Similar to mRNA vaccines, this protein will trigger an immune response that will help to protect you against COVID-19.

Continue to Follow Public Health Measures

COVID-19 vaccines are important tools to help us stop this pandemic. Right now, we still need to follow public health measures to reduce the spread of COVID-19 and save lives.

Federal, provincial and territorial governments will continue to assess the risk of COVID-19 spread in communities. Measures will be adjusted over time as more people are vaccinated. Everyone is looking forward to a future when we can be together.

Until then, we need to protect each other, especially those who are still vulnerable to severe disease from COVID-19.

Get the facts. Visit to learn more.