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04/05/2018 – Managing and Preventing Mental Health in the Workplace


By Catriona Lingwood, Chief Executive of Constructing Excellence in the North East

Mental Health Awareness Week (14 – 20 May 2018) is the perfect time for everyone to talk about mental health. It’s a great opportunity to address work-related stress and the best ways to prevent and manage it.

Research suggests that those working in our industry could be 10 times more likely to die by suicide than from on-site accidents, which is why weeks like this are so important. This year the theme of the week is stress. Research has shown that two thirds of us experience a mental health problem in our lifetimes, and stress is a key factor in this. Stress can lead to other mental health problems such as anxiety, depression or even suicide. We all know what it’s like to feel stressed – it’s part of everyday life. But when you’re overwhelmed by stress it may lead to mental health problems or make existing problems worse.

Work can be a big cause of stress, particularly when demands are greater than the ability to cope, or relationships with management is poor. We need to ensure employees and employers have the tools and knowledge they need to create a mentally healthy workplace where everyone feels valued and supported.

To ensure we have a mentally safe industry, we need to put measures in place to increase good supportive workplaces and reduce workplace stressors where possible. We are delighted to be working with Be. The Centre for Wellbeing to achieve just that. The event, on May 16, will focus on managing Mental Health in the Workplace. During the presentation, Emily Pearson, Head of Workplace Wellbeing will look at the following:

  • Mental health in construction
  • What are the benefits of a mentally healthy workforce?
  • How can you achieve culture change?
  • A manager’s perspective of managing mental health in the workplace

Be. specialises in Workplace Wellbeing under the Health & Safety agenda. Their Workplace Wellbeing Framework is an opportunity for businesses or organisations to actively improve the health and well-being of its workforce and reap the benefits from this culture change. Over the last three years, they have developed, piloted, evaluated and re-developed a tried and tested Framework that has proved to reduce the stigma surrounding mental health in the workplace. It provides everything from expert consultancy to accredited training courses and wellbeing sessions.

Their commitment to the health and wellbeing of staff has proved to reduce stigma, provide knowledge, skills and support to significantly lower the costs related to sickness absence and presenteeism due to mental health problems in the workplace. We need to be talking about stress and depression, we need to ask for help if we need it, whether that be for ourselves or our employees, it’s much more common than we all think, and there’s absolutely no shame in that.

For more information or to register for this event, please contact Amy Holmes on 0191 500 7880 or amy@cene.org.uk

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