IEDP, December 2016
The IEDP’s winter seminar was facilitated by IEDP advisory friend Natasha Broomfield-Reid and featured a fascinating presentation by Christopher Watkins, Senior Disability Consultant from the Business Disability Forum (BDF).
Christopher identified three distinct types of intervention that organisations should make in relation to the mental health of their staff, and argued forcefully that it is important to work on all three areas, as too much focus on one or two of them can actually be counterproductive.
The three categories of intervention he suggested are:
Culture – addressing the stigma attached to mental ill health, encouraging an environment where people feel able to talk about their mental health
Proactive – activity focusing on the well-being of staff in terms of exercise, healthy eating, providing a quiet space etc.
Responsive – identifying people who are experiencing mental ill health, talking to them about to identify specific triggers or barriers, then acting to avoid triggers and make adjustments to address barriers
The key point that he made was that cultural, proactive and responsive interventions cannot exist in isolation and must be balanced in order to be effective. These may be competing agendas, but any single approach in isolation may be counterproductive or counter-inclusive.
If you are an IEDP member you can find Christopher's PowerPoint presentation here in the members' area of the website