A message from Barbara Mason, Group Head, Chief Human Resources Officer, Scotiabank
Banking is a critical service for Canadians at all times. Ensuring Canadians continue to have access to their finances is important to all Canadians, as emphasized recently by Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, Finance Minister Bill Morneau and premiers, mayors and leaders across the country.
Scotiabank is very proud of our teams who continue to work diligently to ensure we provide dedicated service to our customers and to ensure the relief measures we announced this week are available to Canadians in need.
While the Bank’s investments in our digital capabilities allow for the vast majority of banking services to be performed remotely, our branches and contact centres continue to offer critical services to Canadians from coast to coast and Scotiabank is taking the latest precautionary measures to ensure that all workplaces remain as safe as possible for both our customers and employees.
Scotiabank rapidly deployed extensive proactive and preventative measures across the Bank to prioritize the health and safety of our employees and customers. These measures include:
- reconfiguring workspaces, including splitting sites and teams
- practicing social distancing measures for workplaces that remain open
- introducing remote work options
- adding additional personal days to support employees in their childcare, caregiver, or general wellbeing needs
- continuing to support employees whose workplaces are closed with paid leave
- providing complimentary remote medical advice for Canadian employees, including casual and contract workers, through Healthcare Online by Akira, a mobile app that provides 24/7 access to medical professionals
- increasing sanitization and deep cleaning measures of our branches and locations
- implementing a phone line for Canadian employees monitored by our HR and Occupational Health and Safety teams
- providing onsite medical staff for our operations and customer contact centres to support our employees in any medical questions and concerns they may have
- publishing a dedicated page for Canadian employees with up-to-date information on COVID-19 and resources available to them
- providing mental health support through our Employee Assistance Program
- regularly emphasizing preventative hygiene practices
In addition, to recognize the commitment and service these Scotiabankers are delivering every day, the Bank is paying an extra $50 per day to eligible employees who are regularly coming in to work to support our customers at branches, contact centres and large operations centers. Those payments will run at least until the end of April, at which point we will review the situation.
This week the Bank announced additional measures to support employees.
- Canadian employees will have $500 added to their Wellbeing Account, part of their benefits package that can be used to cover a broad range of expenses that support physical, mental and financial wellbeing. This account can now be used to cover additional expenses such as grocery delivery services and home office equipment, such as monitors, chairs, and printers.
- As employees may need additional time off to respond to an urgent personal situation as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic such as childcare, eldercare, medical appointments, and more, the Bank is putting in place an Emergency COVID-19-Related Paid Leave. This will allow employees to take up to a maximum of 5 paid days for the remainder of the 2020 calendar year,
- Schools, many daycares, and other services are closed for an indefinite period of time. Scotiabank already offers a number of flexible work arrangements that can help employees with children at home or other caregiving responsibilities.
Our teams, who are working through these challenging times to ensure our customers’ financial needs are met, exemplify the very best of Canada.
These are unprecedented times for Canada and for Canadians. We are unequivocally committed to doing everything we can to ensure our customers’ needs are being met, while protecting the health, safety and welfare of our employees.
We continue to listen to and support our employees and will continue to add to these measures over the days ahead.