HR Response to “Mental Health in the Workplace”
PsychCentral picked up the article we published here on July 25 in the “Leadership and Coaching” category entitled “Responding To Mental Illness in Your Workforce: Leading a Culture Change.” This important topic struck a chord with PsychCentral’s readers, and was tweeted and retweeted 57 times (so far) by PsychCentral’s Twitter followers. One of them wrote a wonderful response from a human resources point of view on her own consulting blog.
Suzanne Benoit, of Benoit Consulting Services, appreciated Carol’s
enlightened and sensitive approach to individuals suffering with mental illness in the workplace. The article is aimed as helping leaders understand the issue of mental illness in the workplace. I appreciate this because I have found my HR friends can benefit from increased comfort with this topic. There are times when my HR training and clinical experience collide. This is one of them.
She goes on to explain, “My views on mental illness and HR arise from a very different place than my HR peers mostly because of my exposure to severe and chronic mental illness. The stigma Ms. Kivler discusses is very powerful indeed. Because of my experience, I am not afraid of individuals with mental illness. I know that these are fellow human beings with a variety of personal values and styles.”
She adds some interesting points about the “natural caution” of HR departments, and the constraints of HIPAA that hinder the implementation of some of Carol’s suggestions. She explains “presenteeism,” in which the employee is not absent, but is distracted by stress and other things. She believes mental illness to be responsible for some of those distractions.
You can read the rest of this fine article on Ms. Benoit’s blog.
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