Dealing with mental health issues in the workplace – challenges for employers

11 Oct 2017

Yesterday was World Mental Health Day and the theme for 2017 is “mental health in the workplace”. 1 in 4 people will experience some sort of mental health problem each year, and 9 out of 10 of those people will experience stigma and discrimination because of it. More than half of all UK adults said they would not employ someone with depression even if they were the best candidate for the job.

Many employees are scared to take sick days for mental health, which leads to poor productivity in the workplace. Even with concerns over “presentism”, poor mental health is responsible for more than 70 million lost working days every year. This leads to a notoriously difficult challenge for employers.

Simon Bellm, Partner in the Employment Team at top 100 law firm DMH Stallard, said “There is often confusion in organisations about how best to support those who need help, and how far an employer’s obligations go. Employers who do get to grips with the challenges and potential pitfalls will be well placed to deal positively and compassionately with employees who are struggling with their mental wellbeing.”

With this in mind, ACAS have produced 3 new useful publications dealing with the issue. These can be found at the links below:

Promoting positive mental health in the Workplace

Dealing with Stress in the Workplace

Managing staff experiencing mental ill health

If you need support in dealing with a challenging issue or if you would like to discuss what steps your organisation can take to support mental health in the workplace, please contact Simon using the details below.

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