Exertis has announced that it has trained 26 of its employees, with coverage in all of its locations, as mental health first aiders (MHFA) to ensure that any colleagues with mental health issues have all the relevant support networks in place
Tim Griffin, Exertis Group MD, said: “I am delighted that we have trained mental health first aiders around the business as part of our initiative to improve mental health awareness and to encourage conversation about the support available. It is something close to my heart and, as an employer, we want to be supportive and enable any employees suffering from mental health to get them back to good health as soon as possible.
“Sadly because of the stigma associated with mental health, it often goes unrecognised. By appointing these first aiders, anyone suffering with depression, anxiety, stress or other conditions can approach them in confidence.”
World Mental Health Day is an opportunity to improve the mental health of people around the world. The theme selected for this year’s day is suicide prevention:
- One person dies from suicide every 40 seconds
- Suicide affects people of all age groups in all countries
MHFAs volunteer for the role and complete a two-day training session. They are not counsellors, psychologists or experts, but simply first responder, non-judgemental “listeners” who can signpost services and provide guidance. MHFAs are also trained to spot the early signs and symptoms of mental ill health and encourage individuals to access appropriate professional support or self-help.
According to Mental Health First Aid England, 140,000 people were trained in 2018/19.
The MHFA initiative is part of a wider programme of support in the workplace for Exertis employees. The company offers a complimentary Employee Assistance Programme (EAP) through MetLife who provide assistance in a number of areas to help balance everyday life with the requirements of work and home and also through Health Assured who provide a number of wellbeing services including a 24/7/365 helpline, up to six face-to-face counselling sessions and access to financial, legal and health support.
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