Frequently asked questions

The Judges Counselling Program provides federally and provincially appointed active and retired Judges, Justices of the Peace, Masters, Prothonotaries, and their families, including spouses and eligible children (under 21 years of age, or under 25 years of age and attending an accredited school, college or university on a full-time basis, or over 20 or 24 years of age who was a dependant child as defined above when they became incapable of engaging in self-sustaining employment by reason of mental or physical impairment, and is primarily dependent upon the member for support and maintenance), with access to short-term counselling, worklife solutions, and trial support service. Shepell is the company that administers and runs the confidential counselling and information services for the JCP. To request a telephone or in person appointment call the JCP at 866-872-6336 and a Client Care Representative will be happy to assist you.  

  • Does the JCP Executive Committee receive information about my use of the JCP?
  • Shepell, the company that administers your counselling, provides the JCP Executive Committee with periodic statistical reports with non-identifying information, such as the number of people who have used the services and a summary of the kinds of issues presented. These reports do not include names or any other identifying information and uphold our commitment to maintain the anonymity and confidentiality of anyone using the JCP.

  • If the JCP counsellor refers me to an outside resource, who pays the bills?
  • Your provincial health plan or medical benefit plan may cover these costs. It is the individual’s responsibility to find out which services outside of the JCP are covered by benefits.

  • My spouse is experiencing emotional stress. Should he go to a private practitioner or to the JCP?
  • There are different avenues of help for people experiencing emotional stress. The decision of whether to go to a private practitioner or to access counselling through the JCP is a personal one. However, it is important to keep in mind that your JCP offers counselling for a wide range of problems, including emotional stress, and that these services are provided at no cost. When a spouse or other eligible family members accesses JCP services, confidentiality is maintained from all other family members.

  • I suspect my child may be using drugs. Can the JCP help me?
  • Yes. You should contact the JCP to determine the most effective role you as the parent can take in addressing your child’s potential drug problem. The JCP can also help you in coping with the stress usually associated with this type of problem.

  • One of my children attends school in another province. How can they use the JCP?
  • If your child is eligible under your medical benefit plan, they can use the JCP in the area where they are attending school. Just give them the toll-free JCP number or e-mail address. The JCP has counsellors in over 1,500 locations across Canada.

  • Will the JCP provide service to minor dependents without parental knowledge?
  • Unless required to notify parents of minors by law, the confidentiality of minors will be maintained. In most instances, the successful resolution of a minor’s problem depends on active support from the parent. Therefore, the JCP counsellor will encourage the minor to involve the parent(s).

  • Will the JCP provide help in resolving financial problems?
  • Yes. Shepell will direct you to an appropriate agency where you can get the help you need, at no cost to yourself or eligible family members.

  • If I have legal problems, can the JCP give me legal information?
  • Yes. The JCP will connect you with a lawyer who can provide legal consultation and advice over the phone. If you decide you would like to obtain a lawyer for services, a referral can be made at a preferred rate. (Legal Information Services does not provide legal advice on labour/employment issues.)

  • If I decide to use the JCP, will my colleagues know about it?
  • Not unless you want to tell them. JCP counsellors will deal only with you, not with your colleagues, unless you grant legal written permission.

  • Can anyone make me to go to the JCP?
  • No. It’s your decision whether or not to use the JCP. This is a voluntary program. Someone may suggest the JCP as a source of help, but you’re entirely free to accept or reject this suggestion.

  • Can I get help for a problem involving one of my dependents, rather than for myself?
  • Yes. You and your immediate family members (including children) may use JCP services. We would encourage you to have your dependent contact the JCP directly for personal assistance.

  • Why should I use the JCP instead of services covered under the medical benefit plans?
  • The JCP is not offered as a replacement for the services covered under the medical benefit plans, but rather to complement them. The JCP services deal with short-term problems and provide referrals for specialized or longer-term services.

  • What happens in the event of a crisis?
  • Counsellors are available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week in the event of an emergency. Simply call the JCP telephone number and indicate that your situation is a crisis or an emergency.

  • Who are the counsellors for this service?
  • Shepell•fgi has a network of counsellors across the country. They all have a minimum of a Masters Degree and an average of 10 years clinical experience. They are the best counsellors in the industry, with expertise in several disciplines, such as social work, marriage and family issues, education, psychology and addictions.

  • I have more than one personal problem. Will this program deal with all of them?
  • You can talk over as many problems with your counsellor as you see fit.

  • How is my confidentiality assured?
  • JCP is designed to provide you the opportunity to resolve your problems in an understanding and private environment. Two judges will never have back-to-back appointments with the same counsellor, ensuring that there will be no accidental meetings. Identifying telephone messages are never left at work or home. All records relating to your participation in JCP are confidential. No information can or will be given out without your signed consent.

  • What is the Judges Trial Support Service?
  • The Judges Trial Support Service is in place to support Judges involved with difficult court cases. The judicial work setting is complex and highly demanding and bound by confidential processes and regulatory constraints. Research and anecdotal feedback from Judges and their families reveal that the judicial work environment has an array of workplace stressors.

  • What is the Worklife Solutions service?
  • The Worklife Solutions service offer a suite of confidential advisory services that assist judges and their family members in balancing work/life issues. Professional Worklife Specialists are available to provide telephone assessments, consultations, resources, and advice 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Packaged information, educational material, Web-based listings and books may also be made available after the initial assessment.

  • What is the Counselling service?
  • The JCP provides access to short-term counselling away from the workplace, where your problems can be resolved in an environment of understanding and strict privacy. It provides confidential, professional consultation and assistance for you and your eligible family regarding the following problems:

    • family and marital relationships
    • work and personal/family balance
    • personal and emotional difficulties
    • depressions, anxiety and stress
    • workplace stress
    • alcoholism and drug dependency
    • grief and bereavement issues
    • childcare/eldercare issues
    • legal and financial concerns
  • What is the Judges Counselling Program (JCP)?
  • The Judges Counselling Program provides federally and provincially appointed active and retired Judges, Justices of the Peace, Masters, Prothonotaries, and their families, including spouses and eligible children (under 21 years of age, or under 25 years of age and attending an accredited school, college or university on a full-time basis), with access to short-term counselling, worklife solutions, and trial support service.

    Shepell is the company that administers and runs the confidential counselling and information services for the JCP.

    To request a telephone or in person appointment call the JCP at 866-872-6336 and a Client Care Representative will be happy to assist you.

    For E-counselling service click here.