The Federation of Small Businesses has launched a new campaign aimed at promoting good mental health among small businesses and the self-employed.
Working closely with mental health charities Mind and Mental Health First Aid England, the ‘It’s okay to talk about mental health’ campaign will look to provide the UK’s 5.7 million small business community with information and advice to help them gain a better understanding of mental health and how it can affect their employees.
Commenting on the launch of the campaign, FSB National Chairman Mike Cherry, spoke of his own father’s struggles with depression and the need for small business owners to address mental health in the workplace.
He said: “Mental health is a huge challenge for society. Government, business owners, and each of us as individuals can work together to help destigmatise mental health and create an open environment where we can all talk about, and take care of, each other’s mental health.
“My own father suffered from depression for many years, something which impacted his ability to run and manage the family business. In fact, it was partly due to this that I decided to leave school when I was only sixteen in order to help run the business. Although, I have no regrets about that decision – and have enjoyed a very rewarding career running my family business – it has made me very conscious of the impact poor mental health can have on small business owners, as well as employees.
“Despite the impact poor mental health can have on a business, many small business owners are still reluctant to talk about it. I believe that we, as business owners, must play a critical role in talking about mental health in the workplace and lead the way in both destigmatising mental health in the workplace and acting to help our people when they are struggling.
“By both talking about it and addressing it, we can help promote an open environment where people feel comfortable talking about the issues that are affecting them, work out what positive changes we can make in the workplace, and make some progress to help each other.”
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