How can HR Support Employees with Mental Health Issues?

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David Wilson
Manager, Canada

How can HR Support Employees with Mental Health Issues?

For most of history, HR has tended to avoid or ignore employees with mental health issues. HR will react to these individuals when they become a problem employee. Statistically, 20% of all adults will have a mental health event in their lifetime. If the event impacts your work performance, you will probably find many HR organizations are not equipped to deal with issue, nor do they treat the employee fairly.

I know treatment of people with mental health issues has improved in some countries, but there is still more to be done. What should HR do to help an employee with mental health issues? And how does HR support an employee where a dependent family member (i.e. spouse or child) needs help? From personal experience, I believe HR needs to do more to support employees. Reducing the lost time and improving organizational responses should help improve operations and productivity. Do you agree?

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