The leader of a national NHS organisation is marking a big step towards supporting mental health in the workplace by signing the Time to Change pledge.

Alistair McDonald, the chief executive of the NHS Business Services Authority (NHSBSA), has signed the pledge ahead of Time to Talk Day tomorrow, 7 February.

The pledge represents the organisation committing to support staff with mental health issues and has created an action plan with employees to help tackle the stigma around mental health, which will focus on seven principles.

This includes gaining support from senior management, establishing employee champions and asking employees to share their stories. It also aims to provide managers with the tools to support people and, where necessary, signposting them to appropriate services.

As part of the campaign, Time to Talk Day on Thursday 7 February encourages everyone to talk about mental health. Mental health problems affect one in four of us, yet people are still afraid to talk.

Alistair McDonald said: “Our people are our greatest strength and they work hard to support delivery of key health services for the public. We want them to feel confident and supported at work and make sure they have the tools to support their mental wellbeing and resilience.

“It is so important that we do all we can in our vision to create a great place to work. We realise that if our people are feeling under pressure, they need to be able to raise issues of stress or mental ill health without feeling stigmatised or judged.

“Everyone, including our customers, benefits from this approach.”

So far the Time to Change pledge has been signed by more than 980 employers across the UK.

For more information on Time to Change visit: https://www.time-to-change.org.uk/

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