With more than one half of the Australian population in lockdown and the uncertainty around both what ‘living with COVID” will look like and when we can expect life to get back to ‘normal’, our health – in particular our mental health - has never been put more to the test.
While Western Australia and the Northern Territory have been very fortunate compared to other states, the workforce throughout our Industry do still endure the restrictions and consequences of limited travel, and extended periods physically or socially isolated from friends and family.
More than ever, we need to ensure that the workplace provides a secure environment and culture that supports people experiencing mental health issues and reduce stigma associated with mental health conditions.
Inspired by the World Health Organisation:
“The development and implementation of a workplace mental health policy and programme will benefit the health of employees, increase productivity for the company and will contribute to the wellbeing of the community at large”
Mental health policies and programmes in the workplace (WHO Mental Health Policy and Service Guidance Package)
the WA/NT Health Working Group (HWG) have worked to provide a simple, two-page document to share with all Safer Together members that can be used as guidance in the preparation of a Mental Health Policy for their organisation. In late September it was approved for issue by the WA/NT Safety Leaders Group.
The aim of the Mental Health and Wellbeing Policy - Guidance Note and Template is not to “re-invent the wheel” but to simplify and consolidate key resources and advice from recognised expert Mental Health organisations, providing a guideline and template of ‘gold standard’ while:
- recognising a policy may have a different ‘look and feel’ from one organisation to the next based on their needs and context; and
- understanding that the guidance for managing and supporting mental health is constantly evolving. The Code of Practice and other resources embedded in the guidance constitute current best practice approach.
The Mental Health and Wellbeing Policy - Guidance Note and Template are available to download here.
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