Hobart has rolled out mental health first aid training across its business and said support will be accessible to all employees moving forward.
The Peterborough-based firm has introduced a number of initiatives across its equipment and service divisions to help colleagues raise awareness of mental health, and how to deal with issues if or when they arise.
Joanne Kemp, European HR director at ITW Food Equipment, said: “It is reported that one in four adults experience mental health problems in any given year and that due to the pandemic, mental health problems are on the rise.
“Employee health and wellbeing will always be important to our leadership team who recognise now, more than ever, that it is time to consider how we can improve our employee’s mental health in the workplace.”
Ms Kemp said the business was overwhelmed by the response to its request for volunteers to attend the course.
“We had a phenomenal response to our request for volunteers to be mental health first aiders. The individuals represented a good cross-section of our businesses and so the managing directors decided to put everyone forward for the training.”
The training is accredited by MHFA England and aims to equip first aiders with the confidence to spot the early warning signs of mental health issues, such as depression, anxiety disorders or stress etc, and to encourage early intervention.
Mental health issues, including stress and anxiety, are reported to be on the rise across UK workplaces following the pandemic.
According to the Office for National Statistics, around one in four (21%) adults experienced a mental health issue in early 2021, more than double the figure prior to the pandemic (10%).
Ms Kemp said: “Health and safety is the responsibility of everyone. Our strategy is to educate our employees, create a positive workplace culture and guide and support employees with their mental health needs. This knowledge and encouragement of open communication will help our teams to build up their mental resilience.”