People with mental health issues have many problems in contemporary society. Their lives revolve around their treatments which makes them feel alone and isolated.
This is a problem that many people turn a blind eye to. The subject is still considered to be a taboo. Not nearly enough people are trying to contribute to include mental health patients in society.
The main cause for this behavior lies in ignorance. In the following article, you can discover several means and ways to include people with mental health issues in the corporate sphere.
Somewhere between seventy and ninety percent of people who’re diagnosed with a mental condition are unemployed.
This number varies from one country to another, but its significance is still enormous. This is the only group of people with disabilities who suffer this much from lack of employment.
Having a job is one of the main aspects of an adult person’s life. By preventing people with mental health issues to be employed, we’re not only negatively affecting the world’s economy, but we’re also denying them the right to work.
As a matter of fact, this directly turns them into outcasts. They can’t establish discipline, develop a purpose in life, or contribute to a cause. This further leads to the development of additional mental problems like depression which only increases the suicide rate.
This kind of behavior obviously has a damaging effect on the mental health community. It’s exactly the opposite of beneficial – work is recovery, and people with a mental health condition can greatly benefit from employment.
Handling Mental Health Issues in the Workplace
Ignorance is the most significant problem standing in the way of integrating mentally challenged people into the workforce.
It’s not at all uncommon for people to be reserved when it comes to mental health patients. This happens only because they don’t know how to behave due to lack of knowledge about mental health problems and mental health in general.
Before you bring them in, you should raise awareness about mental health problems.
Mental health disorders need to stop being a taboo. For mental health patients to feel welcome in the workplace, it is necessary to include them in daily conversations and discuss their problems much like you would with the rest of your colleagues.
Company Inclusion Culture
It’s the responsibility of a team leader to primarily recognize mental illness as a company concern. In order to employ mental health patients, you first need to address the problem and develop a new company policy.
It’s also necessary to develop company laws regarding anti-discrimination. Of course, you should first appeal to your employees’ better nature and expect from them to welcome mentally challenged colleagues with open hands, but you should regulate official consequences of undesired behavior.
After you do so, your management team needs to be properly educated about mental disorders and how to treat employees who are diagnosed with one. They are the core of your company’s business model – the behavior of your managers will be mirrored by the rest of your employees.
The majority of your employees, 70% of them to be precise, responds to the management’s engagement efforts – you should take advantage of this influence to implement and enforce your company’s newfound policies.
Break the Stigma
The stigma has a deep root; it’s the most powerful obstacle standing between employment and mental health patients, and you should know that it will be challenging to exterminate this problem from your company.
Breaking the stigma comes down to individuals. A business leader can organize and conduct training, raise awareness, and punish undesired behavior, but the success of integrating people with mental issues falls down to individuals.
For individuals, much like for everyone else, the first step is education. After you educate yourself, you’ll be able to comprehend the problem and share knowledge with your surroundings.
It’s imperative to use the right language when raising awareness about mental health issues, as well as when talking to troubled people. Your vocabulary can either help solve this problem or make it even bigger.
Finally, know that it’s only natural to have a series of difficulties when it comes to understanding problems that people with mental issues face. At first, it may even seem impossible to comprehend. The more you learn about the matter, the easier it will be for you to wrap your head around different issues.
The most relevant characteristic you should manifest when working or socializing with mental health patients is empathy. Show compassion and be sensitive to their needs. Remember that you’re not communicating with a mental disorder, but with a person.
As mentioned in the beginning, people with mental issues often feel like outcasts, and the guilty party who caused this problem is society.
People with disabilities, not just in the area of mental health, deal with prejudice and discrimination which makes them feel less worthy and isolated from society.
It’s not realistic to expect to solve this deeply rooted problem overnight. One small step at the time – a change in the company’s policy, sharing a kind word, and showing sympathy will contribute to integrating mental health patients into society.
Consistency, continuous efforts to raise awareness, rewarding the desired behavior as well as defining consequences for the lack of it, as well as plain friendliness, will together enable your company to go through the needed transition so that you can include and accept people with mental health issues.