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During Mental Health Awareness month, employers have a unique opportunity to cultivate a supportive workplace environment that prioritizes the mental well-being of their employees.

Why is Mental Health Awareness Important?

 Today, mental health awareness has become increasingly vital as millions grapple with various mental health challenges. Consider these eye-opening statistics about mental health in the United States:

  • 1 in 5 U.S. adults experience mental illness annually, yet only 47.2% receive treatment.
  • 1 in 20 U.S. adults face serious mental illness each year, with only 65.4% receiving treatment.
  • 1 in 6 U.S. youth have a mental health condition, but only half receive treatment.
  • 50% of all lifetime mental illness begins by age 14, and 75% by age 24.

These numbers highlight the critical need for accessible, comprehensive mental health care. Many people lack adequate support and resources, but employers can play a pivotal role in addressing this gap.

By implementing thoughtful initiatives and activities, employers can promote awareness, reduce stigma, and encourage open dialogue about mental health.

Here are a few strategies to help promote Mental Health Awareness Month at work:

Educational Workshops and Seminars

  • Host workshops or seminars led by mental health professionals to educate employees about common mental health challenges, coping strategies, and resources available for support.
  • Take advantage of BHT’s monthly free webinars and share them with your employees, including our webinar on anxiety on May 22.

Wellness Activities and Team Building

  • Offer on-site yoga or meditation sessions to promote relaxation and stress reduction among employees.
  • Encourage team-building activities that foster connection and support, such as group walks or team lunches.

Access to Mental Health Resources

  • Make sure employees are aware of and have access to mental health resources, such as employee assistance programs (EAPs), counseling services, or mental health hotlines.
  • Provide information about health insurance coverage for mental health services and educate employees on how they can use their benefits to access treatment.

Promoting a Healthy Work Environment

  • Create a culture of open communication and psychological safety where employees feel comfortable discussing mental health concerns without fear of stigma or discrimination.
  • Encourage healthy work boundaries by discouraging after-hours emails and respecting employees’ time off to recharge and rejuvenate.

By implementing these initiatives and fostering a culture of mental health awareness, employers can demonstrate their commitment to supporting the well-being of their employees not just during Mental Health Awareness Month, but throughout the year.

Download the National Alliance on Mental Illness’s Mental Health Awareness Month Campaign resources to share with your team.

Want more from your insurance? Learn how BHT makes mental health resources a priority in all our medical plans – download an example of our Monthly Mental Health Toolkits.