July 03, 2004

Stigma at Work

Recent statistics estimate that a quarter of all people are likely to suffer from a mental health problem. For this population, discrimination in the workplace remain a very real problem. The save survey estimates that one in three of those experiencing mental health problems will be bullied or harrassed by bosses or coworkers.

Due to such stigma, mental health advocates say, much productive talent is wasted because people who suffer mental illness are afraid to reveal their problems to employers on job applications, during interviews, or when up for promotion.

To address this problem, a recently launched UK-based campaign addresses prejudices associated with mental illness, and works to change prevailing attitudes.

For example, NHS Health Minister Malcolm Chisholm has pledged funds to support an existing mental health information program. This is after a three-year inquiry in the mental health services available in Scotland, which concluded that there was "far too much variation in the standard of care."

For the full news article, please see 'Mental Health Workplace Concerns' in BBC news (http://news.bbc.co.uk), July 1 2004

For more information on dealing with mental illness in the workplace, see Disclosing Mental Health Difficulties When Looking for Work at www.rethink.org.

Know your rights: review the Americans With Disabilities Act (ADA), which protects people with disabilities from discrimination in the workplace and elsewhere.


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