Over 150 City firms will come together to wear green ribbons for Mental Health Awareness Week (8-12 May 2017) in a new drive to end the stigma of talking about mental health in the workplace. Banks, insurers, asset managers, law firms, professional services firms and mental health charities make up some of the organisations coming together to demonstrate to their employees that it is important to talk about mental health.
Staff throughout the City of London and across the country will be wearing 70,000 green ribbons this week. The campaign, inspired by PwC’s Green Light To Talk initiative, will reach over 300,000 employees and is being led by The Lord Mayor’s Appeal This is Me – in the City campaign.
Buildings across London including the Bank of England, PwC’s Embankment headquarters, One Canada Square and the National Theatre will also be lit up in green throughout the week to show support for the initiative.
A new survey of workers in UK businesses by PwC shows that 40% of employees would still not feel comfortable raising a mental health issue with a colleague or manager.
Alderman Dr Andrew Parmley, Lord Mayor of the City of London said :
“I am proud to be wearing my green ribbon to support the This is Me – in the City campaign and am delighted that so many businesses have joined the initiative. Mental health difficulties can affect any of us at any time and half of absences in non- manual work can be put down to stress. Employers have a responsibility to support their staff and encourage open conversations in a push to end the stigma of discussing mental health in the workplace.”
“It’s encouraging to see employers across the capital letting people know it’s okay to talk about their mental health. This openness can have a positive impact on personal wellbeing as well as being in the best interests of society in general.”
Kevin Ellis, Chairman and Senior Partner at PwC, said :
“Tackling the stigma is vital. It’s encouraging to see employers across the capital letting people know it’s okay to talk about their mental health. This openness can have a positive impact on personal wellbeing as well as being in the best interests of society in general. We received an enthusiastic response to the green ribbon campaign we launched at PwC last year. It’s positive that 135 organisations are now giving their people the green light to raise mental health issues, through the Lord Mayor’s campaign.”
Jayne-Anne Ghadia, CEO of Virgin Money, said :
“Overcoming the stigma around mental health conditions is essential. It can be very difficult to admit to having a problem at work but the fact that one in four people will experience difficulties with their mental health in any given year shows why it is so important for businesses to respond positively and sensitively. We hope the green ribbon campaign will provide a significant nudge towards cultural change in the workplace to benefit everyone – society in general, business and the City.”
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