THE City Mental Health Alliance (CMHA) has launched a mental health and race toolkit to help businesses to protect and support the mental health of their black, Asian and minority ethnic employees.
The four strategic actions listed in the toolkit are challenging all forms of racism in the workplace, build inclusive and representative mental health and wellbeing support, allocate Board level responsibility and measuring and collection of data for tracking what does and doesn’t work.
The toolkit includes practical suggestions for achieving these strategic actions. It also describes the Lloyds Banking Group’s Race Action Plan and PwC’s representative mental health awareness campaign.
“People who are black or from a minority ethnic background have been the most impacted by inequality and racism, often since childhood. Last year, they have also been affected by triggering conversations following George Floyd’s tragic death, and a disproportionate Covid-19 impact,” said Poppy Jaman, CEO of the CMHA.
“It’s unsurprising that a growing body of research tells us that these communities are living with a higher incidence of poor mental health. Over the last six months, we have seen an outpouring of support and commitment to action from the business world to address racial disparity. Our hope is that this toolkit will help organisations to build on this commitment, take action and better protect, support and create positive mental health of employees who are black or from a minority ethnic background.”
Beth Robotham, executive director, Goldman Sachs, and deputy chair of CMHA said: “People might hesitate to explore race, ethnicity and mental health through fear of making a mistake or feeling intimidated by the scale of the work needed. But we cannot let this stand in our way. Much like the journey that many business leaders have been on together to talk more openly about our mental health, commitment and bravery is again needed to make progress through education, collaboration and action.”
Henrietta Jowitt, director general of the CBI on behalf of Change the Race Ratio campaign, said, “The ambition of our Change The Race Ratio campaign is to accelerate racial diversity in business. This is not just a numbers game, but requires a shift in workplace culture. It will only be possible to achieve true racial diversity if all workplaces are supportive, psychologically safe and promote a sense of belonging for people who are black and from minority ethnic backgrounds.”