Fifers urged to look out for colleagues’ mental health

Bosses and employees in Fife are being urged to look out for the mental health of colleagues as the end of the year draws closer.

Despite one in four Scots experiencing common mental health problems, in many workplaces it remains a taboo topic.

The Scottish Business Resilience Centre (SBRC) and charity See Me have teamed up to offer advice on how business owners and manager can look out for their staff over the festive period.

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Eamonn Keane, head of cyber and innovation at SBRC, said: “Given the workplace is where the majority of us spend a great deal of our time, it should be a supportive environment where people look after one another.

“Employee wellbeing is a key element of overall business resilience.

“For an employer, creating a healthy working environment can be important in ensuring a productive and effective organisation.

“So, while these tips will help staff, they also impact across the business to make it a much safer environment for everyone.”

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Christmas and the New Year can be some of the most stressful weeks for employees as they tie up work for the year.

Wendy Halliday, interim director at See Me, said: “There’s a significant problem with people in Scotland not being able to speak openly about their mental health in the workplace, which can lead to people feeling like they’ve nowhere to go if they’re struggling.

“It’s really important that in all areas of our lives we’re able to say we’re not okay – especially in work.”

See Me encourages workplaces to have three key things in place which can help tackle stigma and create mentally healthy cultures – leadership role models; good internal communication and line management.

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Wendy added: “If you are worried about someone, you can help by asking if they are okay and showing that you care.

“The fact that a tenth of people wouldn’t recommend someone for a job if they had a mental health problem shows the need for more education on mental health in work.”