To disclose or not to disclose
Disclosure around mental health in the workplace is a key issue. 1 in 4 of us are affected by mental health issues in any given year, yet the recent report published by BITC on Mental Health in the Workplace, highlighted that almost half of employees said that they would not discuss their mental health with their line manager and less than 4% said they would ask HR for help with a mental health issue. Removing stigma in the workplace around mental health and creating a culture of openness is essential.
An employee may ask who do I turn to? what are the benefits of disclosing or otherwise? how will this affect my future with this company? will I be denied opportunities for training, promotion or transfer? Fear of employers’ attitude towards mental health or the potential experience of discrimination can prevent individuals from disclosing about their mental health. Disclosing your mental health status to your employer should mean that you are covered by the Equality Act and discrimination against you can be unlawful. Employees need to feel they are safe and comfortable to disclose such personal information, it is important they are met with understanding. Having an open culture in the workplace with open conversations offers great benefits to the employees and employers.
If managers understand mental health, they are in a position to develop better outcomes for employees and the organisation. An employer may ask how do organisations manage disclosure? should it be mandatory? do I know enough about mental health? Maudsley Learning at Work can help managers by training them to start the dialogue and challenge myths.
Read more about disclosure in the workplace.