Funded by the Welsh Government and led by two of Wales’ leading mental health charities, Adferiad Recovery and Mind Cymru, Time to Change Wales is the first national campaign established to reduce the stigma and discrimination faced by people with mental health problems in Wales.
The campaign brings together hundreds of individuals, employers and communities as a collective voice against stigma to help create societal change, and they are urging businesses to get involved to help break the stigma of mental health in the workplace and create better environments.
As part of the campaign Time to Change Wales works closely with employers to help them foster a more open culture of discussion and honesty around mental health, as well as providing practical resources and support to reduce stigma in the workplace.
One way it does this is through its Employer Pledge - a public declaration that shows a business wants to step up and tackle mental health stigma and discrimination in the workplace and is dedicated to supporting staff wellbeing by taking realistic and appropriate action.
The new phase of this will have a particular focus on working with SMEs in areas of poverty and deprivation, as well as Black, Asian and Minority Ethnic employers and employees.
On opening the initiative up to SMEs, Lowri Wyn Jones, programme manager for Time to Change Wales, said: “If you’re one person looking after a whole team of people, it can be quite stressful. It can have a huge impact on people’s mental health.
“Through this new phase, we’re committed to opening up our initiative to smaller businesses as they also need our support to challenge the mental health stigma that may be rife in their communities.”
How can the Employer Pledge help your business?
Since the initial launch of the Employer Pledge in 2014, Time to Change Wales has helped hundreds of employers in Wales transform how they think and talk about mental health in the workplace.
92 per cent of employers have reported seeing a positive change in their workforce since pledging, with a further two-thirds saying that being a pledged employer helped them to better support staff with their mental health during the Covid-19 pandemic.
The benefits of being a pledged employer include:
Public recognition of your commitment to tackling mental health stigma and discrimination in the workplace.
An increase in productivity means an increase in revenue, strengthened by a reduction in absence and turnover costs.
Employees feel safe to share their lived experiences without fear of judgement and repercussions.
Employees feel comfortable reaching out for help and support.
Employees feel empowered to actively support the pledge by changing attitudes towards mental health as they’ve experienced direct support from their employer through the TtCW pledge initiative.
Paula, chief executive of Melin Homes a pledged employer said: “We signed the original pledge back in 2014, so Time to Change Wales has given us a framework within which we can shape and mould both our policies and processes.
“The feedback that we get from our staff is that people experience mental health problems for a multitude of reasons, but it will always impact their work environment. And what we want to do is try and create an environment where those issues impact as little as possible on individuals and on the services that they deliver.”
Find out more about how you can become a pledge, and take the steps to make your workplace a positive place today: https://www.timetochangewales.org.uk/en/employers/