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April 24, 2020

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Mates in Mind calls on employers to act now to support long-term mental wellbeing during pandemic

Following the release of data exploring the significant impact that the COVID-19 pandemic is having on the mental health of the public and calls from experts and charities to research the long-term impact of the crisis.

mates in mindJames Rudoni, Managing Director at Mates in Mind said: “Mates in Mind supports recent calls for research to be undertaken around the particular and undoubtedly resonating impacts of this pandemic. However, we emphasise the sentiment expressed by Mind CEO Paul Farmer in recent days, who noted that people are already struggling to access the support they need in these uncertain times.

“In this crucial period, when our mental health as a nation is under strain and the mental wellbeing of our colleagues and employees may have slipped beneath other business priorities, we urge industry leaders to recognise that never has there been a more essential period for us all to invest in the mental health of our people. Supporting our workforces now, letting them know that there is someone there to support them, and how, when and where they can get help is vital if we want our people to be mentally fit for work during and post this pandemic.

“Mates in Mind is committed to supporting workforces in accessing the support they need. We know that in creating a long-lasting culture of openness and prevention, enabling individuals to recognise the signs of mental ill-health early, as well as knowing where they can go to for help, will help to tackle issues of isolation, anxiety and uncertainty around the topic.

“Working alongside our partners from across UK industries, we remain committed to supporting the mental health of the Nation’s workforces through these uncertain times.”

Mates in Mind has evolved its current programme, tools and resources to specifically provide the clarity and confidence around managing mental health during COVID-19. As part of this work, the charity partnered with CECA to provide deliver a series of webinars that are accessible to all, including those who are currently furloughed.

Chief Executive of the Civil Engineering Contractors Association (CECA) Alasdair Reisner said: “The Covid-19 pandemic has changed all our lives and it is more important than ever that people get the mental health support they need.

“This is crucial not only for those who are continuing to work on schemes supporting our NHS, enabling key workers to travel, or delivering power, water, and the internet to our homes, but also for those who have been furloughed under the Government’s Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme.

“Whether people are working from home, self-isolating, or continuing to work to allow the economy and the NHS to function, they must be supported in their mental health needs throughout this crisis.”

James Rudoni, Managing Director of Mates in Mind added: “As the scale and impact of this pandemic unfurls, we emphasise the need to remember that this is a marathon and not a sprint. Therefore, investing in the resilience of our workers so we can continue to tackle the ongoing challenges, is essential to ensuring the overall health of both workforces and organisations themselves, not only during the outbreak but also in the re-adjustment to the ‘new normal’ which will follow.”

COVID-19 Relief Fund Appeal

Earlier this month, Mates in Mind has published a call for donations to its COVID-19 Relief Fund. This Relief Fund will allow Mates in Mind to continue to respond with vital support programmes. It is now expected that workplace mental health issues, already a pervasive challenge will be heavily impacted by the economic fallout of COVID-19.

Steve Hails, Chair of the Board of Trustees of Mates in Mind said: “We are now reaching out to supporters and across the industry to build up a reserve so we can do our part to mitigate the human cost of COVID-19 and its aftermath. My thanks to those that have already stepped forward to work with us.

“This will allow us to continue to support the wider industry – construction, tradespeople, project management, and others; across all sizes of businesses but particularly those that are smaller and self-employed – to get through this period and into the ‘new normal’ by enhancing our ability to continue to respond flexibly and creatively in the short-term to arising issues.

“We are not setting any target – in the current climate we appreciate that every penny counts – and hope you will now join our efforts, to the best of your ability, to help move the UK construction industry workforce forward in good mental health.”

James Rudoni, Managing Director Mates in Mind added: “During difficult times like now, it is vitally important that we work together to support each other. We can support the most vulnerable workers by addressing gaps in workplace mental health provision, including those who are self-employed or running small businesses – some of the those who are hit hardest by this unexpected crisis.

“The importance of mental health awareness cannot be underestimated, especially in the current climate as we all navigate the effects of COVID-19 and the changes it is bringing to each of our lives. Whilst we welcome the announcement of financial support from Government to charities, we also recognise that this provision is limited with no guarantees that Mates in Mind will benefit, and so we very much remain dependent on the kindness of public and industry support.

“Therefore we also welcome any opportunity to work with partners and associations, such as now underway with CECA, to enable our vital message of advice and education to reach further and continue making a real difference to individuals and their families across the Nation at a time when it is most needed.”

Click here to find out how you can support this Appeal.

Webinar: Wellbeing by numbers

Catch-up or listen again to this session:

  • Learn how to use data to shape your workplace wellbeing strategy;
  • Hear evidence of the impact that wellbeing has on productivity and bottom line;
  • Get expert advice on the challenges of implementing a data-led wellbeing strategy and how to overcome them;
  • Understand how the changing priorities and pressures of the pandemic have influenced wellbeing programmes;
  • Walk away with a health & wellbeing toolkit that will help you implement and evaluate your wellbeing strategy.

Join Westfield Health CEO, Dave Capper, Professor Jeff Breckon from the Advanced Wellbeing Research Centre at Sheffield Hallam University and Sky Wellbeing Health & Fitness Manager Alistair Hugo, now...

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