PRINCE William is set to launch a new workplace mental health initiative on Tuesday, which is designed to provide employers with improved access to tools and materials required to better support staff.
The Duke of Cambridge will unveil his Mental Health At Work project at an event in Bristol on Tuesday, which will include an online portal providing access to resources, training and information for managers in order to provide support for employees.
Prince William will visit Bristol’s Engine Shed, an innovation centre located in Bristol Temple Meads railway station, and will attend workshops demonstrating the online portal in action.
The initiative has been created in partnership between the Royal Foundation, the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge’s charitable trust, and the mental health charity Mind.
Paul Farmer, chief executive of Mind, commented on the initiative, stating: “We know that employers want to do more and are starting to see mental health as a priority, but often don’t know where to start.
“The new online Mental Health At Work gateway will change that.
“Over the last few years employers have begun to take staff well-being more seriously and we know that many are doing great work around mental health in the workplace.
“Now is the time for a step change in how we think about mental health at work.”
The initiative will be open to all businesses, but will be particularly focused on small and medium sized organisations, which regularly struggle to access sufficient resources.
Alan Soady, head of media at the Federation of Small Businesses, commented on the issue to Sky News, stating: “For the small business employer without an HR department it’s important that they’re given help, support and guidance to allow them to do that for their staff and also look after their own well-being.”
Prince William will deliver a speech at the event, alongside Antonio Horta Osorio, the chief executive of Lloyds Bank, who will outline his own struggles in the workplace.
The Duke will also meet representatives from a number of organisations who have shown leadership in promoting and advancing mental health initiatives in the workplace.
The project will expand upon the Prince’s previous work on mental health as part of his Head Together campaign, which sought to end the stigma surrounding mental illness.
A survey conducted by Mind into wellbeing in the workplace revealed that almost half of the 44,000 people questioned had experienced poor mental health in their current roles.
However the research also revealed that only half of these individuals had talked to their employers about the issue.
This suggests that as many as one in four UK workers struggle in silence with issues including anxiety, stress and low moods, costing employers between £33-£42billion every year.