Mentally Healthy Workplace Alliance

The Mentally Healthy Workplace Alliance is a collaborative partnership between business, the mental health sector and government and was officially launched by the National Mental Health Commission today.

The Alliance is providing the business sector with practical guidance about mental health designed to drive sustainable changes in business culture and practice, and is developing an evidence-based business case for promoting mentally healthy workplaces. Safe Work Australia is a founding member of the Alliance. Other founding members include the Australian Chamber of Commerce and Industry, the Australian Psychological Society, beyondblue, the Black Dog Institute, the Business Council of Australia, Comcare, the Council of Small Business Organisations of Australia, the Mental Health Council of Australia, SANE Australia and the University of New South Wales.

Professor Allan Fels, Chair of the National Mental Health Commission says the Alliance wants all Australian workplaces to be taking active steps to create mentally healthy workplaces and fully realise the benefits to individuals, businesses and the community.

“Mental illness costs the Australian economy over $20 billion a year, while recent research from SANE Australia highlights that the majority of people feel unsupported when mentally unwell, and less than half of managers (43 percent) have an understanding of mental illness.
“With almost half of Australians likely to experience a mental illness in their lifetime, the importance of having mentally healthy workplaces cannot be overstated.
“Mentally healthy workplaces prevent harm to the mental health of their people, make sure people who experience mental health difficulties are supported, and have positive cultures that are conducive to mental wellbeing.
“Businesses that invest in mental health are also more productive, innovative and likely to recruit and retain the best and brightest people. That’s why the work of the Alliance, and support from the business community is so important.
“Many businesses have already incorporated good practices regarding mental health and wellbeing into their operations, and a key part of the Alliance’s work is learning from and promoting these approaches so that other organisations can implement strategies relevant to them, and their workplace culture,” Professor Fels says.

As part of the project the Alliance is inviting all Australian business to share their experiences in promoting mental wellbeing. The Call for Good Practice is open to all business until 28 July at www.workplacementalhealth.com.au and will help inform the development of practical resources for businesses to be released later in the year. It will also complement the Alliance’s two other major projects:

  • research by the University of New South Wales into evidence-based actions which contribute to creating mentally healthy workplaces, and
  • a report by PwC on the return on investment for creating mentally healthy workplaces.

For more information on the work of the Mentally Healthy Workplace Alliance please visit www.workplacementalhealth.com.au

About the Mentally Healthy Workplace Alliance

The Mentally Healthy Workplace Alliance is a new national approach by business, community and government to encourage Australian workplaces to become mentally healthy for the benefit of the whole community and businesses, big and small. Alliance members acknowledge that:

  • mentally healthy workplaces contribute to the mental health of all Australians
  • mentally healthy workplaces result in increased productivity and other benefits to businesses, and
  • collaboration by stakeholders is key to achieving positive and sustainable change.

The vision of the Alliance is that Australian workplaces take active steps to promote and create mentally healthy workplaces and fully realise the benefits to individuals, businesses and the community.

The Alliance represents a commitment by its members to work collaboratively to provide practical guidance to workplaces to create mentally healthy workplaces, and a sustainable and measurable change in business practices. For more information please visit www.workplacementalhealth.com.au.


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