Each week, ICBA’s Jordan Bateman reflects on what we’ve learned as we participate in ICBA’s Workplace Wellness Program. This program is free for all ICBA members – check out icba.ca/wellness for details.

It’s easy to get jaded with politicians sometimes, but Todd Doherty proves there are still good people doing good work in the House of Commons.

Todd, the MP for Cariboo-Prince George, was 14 years old when his best friend died by suicide. Decades later, still moved by the memory of his friend. Todd introduced a motion in Parliament to create 9-8-8 as an emergency phone number for people contemplating suicide. It’s taken years to get approved and off the ground, but he’s done it: the CRTC has announced it will make 9-8-8 happen.

Unsurprisingly, Todd was deeply moved:

“On the morning of Aug. 31, my team sent a tweet from the CRTC informing Canadians it will be bringing 9-8-8 to Canada. I pulled over my truck in the Canadian Tire parking lot and wept. I couldn’t stop the tears. For over an hour, I tried to compose myself. I still tear up just thinking about it.”

In an op-ed for iPolitics.ca, Todd writes about his friend’s death by suicide, and his work to get 9-8-8 up and running. Every Canadian should read it.

9-8-8, Canada’s new national suicide prevention phone number, will save lives. Thanks for leading the way on this, Todd Doherty.

ICBA’s Workplace Wellness Program is helping more than 75 companies and 7,000+ construction professionals better understand mental health. The program is free for ICBA members — see icba.ca/wellness.