Gemma Bailey, Partner and Head of Employment Litigation and Disputes here at Howells, has been providing her professional observations to WalesOnline (read the full article here) regarding the practical challenges for those of us with mental health problems and our rights regarding taking time off work to manage them.
One-In-Six Employees Experience Mental Health Issues
Figures released by national mental health charity MIND estimate that one-in-six employees experience some type of mental health issue. Gemma Bailey said of these findings:
“Employers cannot ignore these facts but can work to increase awareness and sensitivity to the particular issues arising from mental health when operating their policies to help and assist their employees thereby gaining a happier, more productive workplace.
“In an ideal world, employees should be able to tell their employers about any mental health issues they are facing and take the necessary time off work to deal with them in the same way they would when phoning in with a physical illness such as the flu or stomach upset.”
The benefits to businesses who positively deal with employee mental health issues were confirmed in a recent study undertaken by the Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development. Their study found that:
• 37% of sufferers are more likely to get into conflict with colleagues
• 57% find it harder to juggle multiple tasks
• 80% find it difficult to concentrate
• 62% take longer to do tasks
• 50% are potentially less patient with customers/clients
Interestingly, the findings of the study also showed that for the first time, stress was identified as the major cause of long-term absence in manual and non-manual workers.
Do You Require Guidance on Mental Health Law?
Gemma and her team of employment law experts are available to help and provide advice regarding how employees and employers should approach mental health issues in the workplace, and for other employment law related matters.
If you would like to learn more about this, please book an appointment to chat to one of our friendly employment law solicitors. Get in touch today.