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Mental Health Awareness Month

Source: Fisher Phillips, April 26, 2024

May is Mental Health Awareness Month, which creates an opportunity to reflect on the well-being of your workforce. Recent statistics reveal that employees across all industries are now more susceptible to stress, burnout, and depression at work than they were pre-pandemic. In fact, the current environment for employees has even been termed a state of “permacrisis,” because of the seemingly endless series of issues such as the pandemic, economic inflation, international instability, war, and political tension that permeate our lives each day. In honor of Mental Health Awareness Month, we’ll give you a week-by-week guide for supporting your employees – not just during the month of May but throughout the year.

May 1–3: Start the Conversation

To kick things off, you can learn about the status of workplace mental health in 2024 and start an open dialogue with your employees. The 2024 National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI) Workplace Mental Health Poll found that:

  • 52% of employees polled reported feeling burned out in the past year because of their job.
  • 37% of employees reported feeling so overwhelmed it made it hard to do their job.
  • Around 33% noticed their productivity suffer because of their mental health – and conversely, 36% noticed their mental health suffer because of work demands.


May 6–10: Support Working Parents and Minors

National Children’s Mental Health Awareness Day falls this week, so you could focus on supporting working parents and any employees who are under the age of 18.

4 Ways You Can Support Working Parents

Working parents and those with caregiving responsibilities face unique challenges that others in the workforce do not. Here are some ways you can support them:

  • Offer flexible work arrangements. This might include fully remote and hybrid work, as well as part-time or flexible schedules.
  • Consider implementing parental leave policies that extend beyond what is legally required to better support working parents during the critical stages of early parenthood.
  • Provide childcare resources such as on-site daycare facilities, employer partnerships with local childcare providers, or reimbursements for such costs.
  • Facilitate parenting support groups. Creating opportunities for working parents to connect with each other and offer mutual support can help them feel less isolated and more empowered.

3 Ways You Can Support Working Minors

Special attention should also be paid to working minors, who must balance work with school, extracurricular activities, and other responsibilities. Here are some ways you can support minor employees:

  • Train your supervisors. Offer training sessions or workshops to managers and supervisors to help them recognize signs of mental health issues in minors. Minor employees should feel safe seeking help and support, or reporting any concerns they have with their work environment.
  • Offer flexible work arrangements. Flexible scheduling is also important for working minors, who may need to adjust their work hours to balance their job responsibilities with academic activities and personal lives.
  • Facilitate teen support groups. Like parenting support groups, support groups that allow teens to connect and identify with each other could help ensure minor employees do not feel isolated in their work environments.

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