The need to make workplaces mentally friendly has arisen again, as the global community commemorates World Mental Health Day 2017, which is usually celebrated on every 10 October. With the theme for this year’s celebration being:”Mental health in the workplace “, it is incumbent on all governments, and every employer of labour, to make working environments conducive for staff.
The overall objective of the commemoration is raising awareness of mental health issues and mobilizing efforts in support of better mental health.
According to a WHO’s statement, “depression and anxiety disorders are common mental disorders that have an impact on our ability to work, and to work productively. Globally, more than 300 million people suffer from depression, the leading cause of disability. More than 260 million are living with anxiety disorders. Many of these people live with both.”
A recent WHO-led study estimated that depression and anxiety disorders cost the global economy US$ 1 trillion each year in lost productivity.
“During our adult lives, a large proportion of our time is spent at work. Our experience in the workplace is one of the factors determining our overall wellbeing. Employers and managers who put in place workplace initiatives to promote mental health and to support employees who have mental disorders see gains not only in the health of their employees but also in their productivity at work. A negative working environment, on the other hand, may lead to physical and mental health problems, harmful use of substances or alcohol, absenteeism and lost productivity”, WHO statement.