Time to Change
Addressing delegates, campaign director, Sue Baker, encouraged more organisations to join the movement, to help end the stigma of mental illness.
“Stigma isn’t just life-limiting, it’s actually life-ending for some people,” she said. “This is relevant to every single workplace, whatever the size of your organisation, whatever sector you’re in.”
She referenced the campaign’s seven principles, explaining that participating companies must develop a concrete action plan, equipping line managers to have conversations about mental illness, involving senior leadership and harnessing ‘lived-experience leadership’.
“There are many leaders living and coping with mental health problems,” she stressed. “I’m someone who lives with depression and anxiety; my two episodes were major breakdowns.”
Baker ended her presentation with a quick-fire poll, asking delegates to raise their hand if they would be prepared to talk openly about mental illness with close family or friends; on a first date, or at a job interview. With very few prepared to do the latter two, she explained that the campaign’s “scale of ambition is to get people to put their hands up for all three scenarios”.
“The job is not done,” she said. “We are only at the foothills of mountains of social change.”
To watch an exclusive Q&A with Sue Baker, as well as her presentation in full, click here.