On Thursday 10th October, for World Mental Health day, over 200 people joined together at an event aimed at challenging the stigma of mental health at work.
The event was jointly organised by local mental health charity Hull and East Yorkshire Mind, and Hull City Council to celebrate the Hull employers who have committed to signing the ‘Time to Change’ pledge over the last year.
The Time to Change Employer Pledge demonstrates a business’ commitment to change how they think and act about mental health in the workplace and supports them to make sure that employees who are facing these problems feel supported.
So far this year 43 local employers have committed to sign up to the pledge, and 104 people from local businesses have attended free training put on by Hull and East Yorkshire Mind and Hull City Council.
Karen Shaw, Time to Change Employment Engagement Manager, said: “There are over 1300 employers signed up to the Time to Change employers’ pledge across England – to have 43 new employers in Hull working to sign up over the last year is a great achievement and shows how Hull employers are taking mental health in the workplace seriously. I would like to thank all the employers in Hull who have committed to the pledge over the last year, and I hope this will encourage more people to see that it is possible to challenge the stigma of mental health in the workplace and create an environment where employees feel comfortable to speak openly about their mental health.”
Thursday’s event celebrated all the local employers who have signed the pledge, as well as giving the opportunity for people to learn more about how they can improve the workplace wellbeing culture of their organisations.
Emma Dallimore, Chief Executive at Hull and East Yorkshire Mind said: “It’s fantastic that so many local businesses attended our event today and have committed to the Time to Change employers pledge. We often hear from our local businesses how they want to support mental health at work, but don’t know where to begin. I hope that today we have helped people with the tools to make a difference in their own workplaces, and the motivation to go back to work and put what they have learned into practice.”
The event also heard from Tony Smith, Head Coach at Hull Kingston Rovers; Matt Jukes, Chief Executive at Hull City Council; Emma Latimer, Chief Officer at Hull NHS CCG; Laura Botham, HR Specialist at Siemens Gamesa, and people with lived experience of mental health problems in the workplace, with the aim of breaking down some of the stigma related to mental health in the workplace, with personal experience from senior leaders and staff from local employers.
Julia Weldon, Director of Public Health at Hull City Council said: “It’s extremely encouraging to see so many local employers taking mental health in the workplace seriously; the response to this conference is a demonstration of the importance local employers place on mental health and reflects that stigma is being broken down and people can expect support and understanding at work.
“I am confident this event is just the beginning of our work to ensure people can experience a positive outcome when they seek mental health support at work.”
The Time to Change Employer Pledge is free to sign up to and can be found at https://www.time-to-change.org.uk/get-involved/get-your-workplace-involved/employer-pledge where you can also see the list of all the employers who have signed up to the pledge.
[Claire Thomas – Hull and East Yorkshire Mind]