EMPLOYERS HUB: Why Invest in Mental Health

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  • Over the past 20 years successful governments have pledged to improve health in England and;
  • To address barriers that create inequalities in health.
  • Mental health has been a key priority area and featured strong in policy.
  • Health policy for England is complex and mental health is no exception.

MHFA England: 10 reasons why every employer should invest in staff mental health

Retain skills by reducing staff turnover
Almost a third (31%) of staff said that they would consider leaving their current role within the next 12 months if stress levels in their organisation did not improve.
Cut sickness absence
Mental health issues such as stress, depression or anxiety account for almost 70 million days off sick per year, the most of any health condition, costing the UK economy between £70-£100 billion per year.
Reduce presenteeism
The annual cost of mental health-related presenteeism (people coming to work and underperforming due to ill health) is £15.1 billion or £605 per employee in the UK.
Demonstrate a commitment to corporate social responsibility
Work-related mental ill health costs UK employers up to £26 billion every year through lost working days, staff turnover and lower productivity. However many business leaders still admit to prejudice against people with mental health issues in their organisation.
Decrease likelihood of grievance and discrimination claims from unhappy staff
Grievances or more simply: ‘concerns, problems or complaints that employees raise with their employers’, are on the rise.
Ensure compliance with legislation by understanding the law
If a mental health issue has adverse effects on someone’s ability to perform day-to-day tasks, this is considered a disability protected under the Equality Act 2010. Employers have a duty not to discriminate and to make reasonable adjustments in the workplace.
Ensure a healthier workplace
On average, employees take 7 days off work a year for health reasons and it is estimated that mental health issues account for 40% of this figure. Yet up to 90% feel unable to be honest about this being the reason for their absence.
Improve staff morale
60% of employees say they’d feel more motivated and more likely to recommend their organisation as a good place to work if their employer took action to support mental health and wellbeing.
Increase staff engagement and commitment
“Supporting mental health in the workplace is not just a corporate responsibility, staff who have positive mental health are more productive and businesses who promote a progressive approach to mental health can see a significant impact on business performance, so it’s about good business too.”
– Dr Justin Varney, National Lead for Adult Health and Wellbeing, Public Health England
Optimise performance
There is a strong link between levels of staff wellbeing and performance. Taking a positive, proactive approach to mental health at work can help you grow your staff and your organisation.

BUILDING MENTAL HEALTH (BMH)

BMH is a Framework, borne out of a cross industry volunteer group created with contributions from clients, contractors, specialist sub-contractors, designers, trade associations, trade unions, regulators, training bodies. The purpose is to provide a flexible and consistent framework to enable all parts of the construction sector to access mental health support, provide awareness and training and put in place a structure and systems to support people working in and around our industry.

The goal of BMH is to:

  • Encourage the industry to engage and embrace the mental health agenda;
  • Make best practice and information readily and wherever possible freely available;
  • Ensure that the industry takes a huge leap forward to reduce the stigma surrounding mental health by getting the conversation started while educating as many as possible where and when to seek help.​
For more information, visit: buildingmentalhealth.net

 


POLICY & LEGISLATION IN THE UK

Health and safety at work act (1974)

The health and safety at work act is relevant to mental health in that it classifies mental health issues arising as a result of work conditions as “personal injury” and because it ensures basic rights in relation to healthy work standards. legislation.gov.uk
Mental Health Act (1983) The Mental Health Act 1983 is an Act of the Parliament of the United Kingdom which applies to people in England and Wales. It covers the reception, care and treatment of mentally disordered persons, the management of their property and other related matters. legislation.gov.uk
Mental Capacity Act (2005) The Mental Capacity Act 2005 is an Act of the Parliament of the United Kingdom applying to England and Wales. Its primary purpose is to provide a legal framework for acting and making decisions on behalf of adults who lack the capacity to make particular decisions for themselves legislation.gov.uk
Preventing suicide in England (2012) Government policy document building on the national strategy for suicide prevention, detailing specific actions to be taken. Preventing Suicide Policy (2012)
Mental Health Act (2007)

An update to the Mental Health Act (1983).

Legislation.gov.uk
Health and Social Care Act (2008) The Bill seeks to enhance professional regulation and create a new integrated regulator, the Care Quality Commission, for health and adult social care, with focus on providing assurance about the safety and quality of care for patients and service users. legislation.gov.uk
Equality Act (2010) The Equality Act 2010 legally protects people from discrimination in the workplace and in wider society. It replaced previous anti-discrimination laws with a single Act, making the law easier to understand and strengthening protection in some situations. legislation.gov.uk