Additional mental health support at work

Employers were provided with tools to understand and improve worker mental health.

Companies will have access from today (Thursday 11 August) to a free online platform offering concrete ways to improve mental health at work.

Face-to-face training opportunities, clear guidance on legal business obligations and specialist third-party contacts will come together for the first time, giving employers easier than ever access to ways to create a supportive culture. . and well-being at work.

The move comes as research shows the pandemic has had a detrimental impact on the mental health of people across the country. As more people continue to return to the workplace, the Scottish Government is encouraging employers to support the mental wellbeing of staff so businesses can continue to recover from COVID-19.

Recent research shows that poor mental health costs Scottish employers over £2billion each year and that for every £1 spent on mental health interventions, employers recoup £5 in reduced sick days and increased productivity.

Mental Wellbeing Minister Kevin Stewart said: “A happier workforce creates successful businesses – it’s a win-win situation for everyone involved.

“The pandemic has impacted the mental health of all of us and employers need tools to protect and support the mental health of their staff.

“This platform makes it easier than ever to achieve this goal, and I encourage businesses across Scotland to get involved for the benefit of their people and productivity.”

Public Health Scotland chief executive Angela Leitch said:

“The past few years have been difficult for many people across Scotland and have had an impact on the mental health of many.

“Returning to our workplaces could also be an additional challenge due to changes in personal circumstances. It is widely recognized that being with colleagues can benefit our mental health and being back at work can also be a more positive and productive experience.

“This toolkit will therefore be of tremendous benefit to employers and their staff as we emerge from the restrictions we have lived with for the past two years.”

It comes as See Me, Scotland’s national program to end mental health-related stigma and discrimination, has launched a complementary digital portal that gives employers access to a single framework for all workplaces. . This will help companies make continuous improvements to directly address mental health-related stigma and discrimination.

Wendy Halliday, Director of See Me, Scotland’s program to end mental health stigma and discrimination, said: “Mental health stigma and discrimination in the workplace often stems from a lack of knowledge. People may find that the real issues are either downplayed or ignored in the first place.

“We are calling on organizations to be true leaders in creating positive change, making their workplace the best it can be, by joining the See Me in Work program.

“The new digital portal helps employers take action to address mental health-related stigma and discrimination in the workplace and create workplaces that are open to talking about mental health and where discriminatory behaviors are challenged.”

Background:

The new online platform is available at www.healthyworkinglives.scot/mentalhealth

The £120million Mental Health Transition and Recovery Plan, released in October 2020, continues to transform support, with a renewed focus on prevention and early intervention. This has seen record levels of investment in mental health, record numbers of staff and support provided to more people than ever before.

Separately, the See Me in Work portal is a new free digital platform for employers in Scotland, designed to help transform cultures, policies and practices that will change the way mental health is dealt with in the workplace across Scotland. The four-step program guides employers through cycles of continuous improvement, which include staff surveys and self-assessment activities, and the production of an action plan for the organization to take forward . The portal can be accessed at https://workplaceportal.seemescotland.org/login

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