How can my employer support my mental health in the workplace?


How can my employer support my mental health in the workplace?

The Thriving at Work Review 2017 set out “core standards” that employers who want to support employees with mental health issues should follow. These are:

·       Produce a ‘mental health at work’ plan, implement it and communicate it to employees

·       Provide training to help develop mental health awareness amongst employees

·       Provide all line managers and supervisors with training on mental health in order to promote effective people management

·       Encourage openness about mental health and publicise the support available to employees who are struggling

·       Provide employees with good working conditions, routinely monitor employee mental health and well-being

·       Ensure employees have a healthy work-life balance and provide opportunities for development

Your employer might also choose to have designated ‘mental health first aiders’ (in addition to regular first-aiders which are required by law).

What is a mental health first aider?

Mental health first aid is an internationally recognised qualification designed to teach people how to identify the signs of mental illness and provide first aid help, for example guiding someone to appropriate support, or dealing with someone who is having a panic attack. Having a mental health first aider in the workplace also encourages employees to talk more openly about mental health to help create a more positive and mentally healthy culture.

Having a mental health first aider in the workplace is not currently a legal requirement in the same way that there is a requirement to have qualified physical first aiders. However, there is an ongoing campaign to make it a legal requirement and the issue has previously been debated in parliament. We may see a change in the law to this effect within the next few years.

Are there any other initiatives?

City businesses have in October 2019 joined forces with charities including Mind and the Mental Health Foundation to adopt a set of cores standards including a routine monitoring of mental health and promoting “effective people management through line managers and supervisors. The organisation is called The Mental Health at Work Commitment and there are 6 core standards that employers which are signed up to the initiative are expected to adopt.

 

We are a leading firm of employment law solicitors, acting for employees and senior executives in the City and throughout the UK. For more information on a mental health issue at work, and a free consultation, please get in contact on 020 7100 5256 and ask to speak to Philip Landau or any member of the employment team, or email us.

 

Please click here for the main Mental Health at Work page

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