Time to Talk Day – 6 February

Choose to talk about mental health this Time to Talk Day…

Too often, mental health problems are treated as a taboo subject – something not to be talked about, especially at work.

However, mental health affects us all and we should feel able to talk about it.

The more conversations we have, the more myths we can bust and barriers we can break down. All helping to end the isolation, shame and worthlessness too many of us feel when experiencing a mental health problem.

Here at the CCG, we want to:

  • create a workplace that supports and values staff
  • create a safe and positive environment, where staff feel comfortable and supported in speaking out about mental health issues
  • equip line managers, so they feel supported when holding conversations about mental health.

That’s why we’re making a Time to Change Employer Pledge. The pledge is a commitment to changing the way we all think and act about mental health in the workplace.

We understand, to fully embed this culture means reducing the stigma, discrimination and changing attitudes towards mental health at every level of the organisation.

West Essex CCG has committed to a 12-month action plan, which we’ll kick off in March. Look out for further details on AskHUE over the coming months.

Mental health can affect anyone. One in four of us will experience a mental health problem in any given year. By choosing to be open about mental health, we are all part of a movement that’s changing the conversation around mental health. We also ensure nobody feels isolated or alone for having a mental health problem.

As part of our ongoing commitment to this, the CCG is supporting Time to Talk Day. Taking place today (6 February), this is a day where we encourage everyone to have a conversation about mental health. Starting a conversation about mental health might seem daunting, but it doesn’t have to be awkward. Simply texting a friend or being there to listen to a colleague can make a huge difference.

We want everyone who works here to feel they can be open about their mental health, and ask for support if they need it.

This is why we’ve been working with a local school in Epping, St John’s School and four of their health and care sixth form students. They focused on mental health and the issues young people face. The Communications team worked with them on a week long campaign in their school, where they spoke in every assembly to all year groups.

Alongside this we bravely let them stage a takeover on our social media channels, specifically Twitter and Facebook. Here they are posting messages on where young people can get help and encouraging friends to talk to each other, and ask them twice how they are. As part of their research they found a great, fun 30 second video which reiterates this.

If you need confidential advice and counselling, you can call the Employee Assistance Helpline free, 24 hours a day on 0800 328 1437. You can also visit the Employee Assistance website for more information. Your login access code is: WestEssex.

Let the Communications team know if you have any ideas to get people in the organisation talking.

To find out more about the day, visit the Time to Change website.

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