New Mental Health Certification Will Help Create Healthier Workplaces – Forbes

Posted: February 7, 2020 at 1:45 pm

This post was added by Alex Diaz-Granados

Mental health, conceptual image.

About 1 in 5 employees will experience a mental health condition each year, and because serious mental illness causes $193.2 billion in lost earnings each year, its a topic too big to be ignored by companies.

Employers who value and prioritize mental health can see the positive impact it has on employee retention, engagement, and health care costs.

Which is why Mental Health America (MHA)recently announced a new national employer certification program, called the Bell Seal for Workplace Mental Health to help guide employers. The program assesses workplaces in five categories: workplace culture, health insurance and benefits, employee perks and programs, legal and ethical compliance and leadership and community engagement.

Mental Health America envisions a nation where the average American workplace understands the value of addressing mental health at work and implements policies and practices that support employee well-being, saidPaul Gionfriddo, Mental Health America president and CEO. While employees seek workplaces that are stable, supportive, and less stressful, employers seek workers who are engaged, productive and loyal. Fortunately, by addressing mental health at work, employers can achieve the distinct but complementary goals of both employees and the organization.

TheBell Sealrecognizes employer advances in workplace mental health by awarding levels of bronze, silver, gold, and platinum. By becomingBell Seal-certified, an organization sets itself apart as a workplace that values mental health and a mentally healthy work environment for all employees. Any employer - large or small - is encouraged to apply. TheBell Sealapplication process operates on a rolling basis, so that MHA can accept applications year-round.Because all workplaces are different, an employer can aspire to receive recognition at four levels Bronze, Silver, Gold, and Platinum.

Through the Bell Seal certification process, organizations will have opportunities to discuss the relationship between mental health and the following objectives:

As part of the certification process, organizations will receive a comprehensive assessment of its existing workplace policies and practices for each of the five categories. Based on the results, MHA will provide insight into the areas an employer is doing well and guidance for the areas that need improvement.

To date, four companies have completed the process to becomeBell Seal-certified and include:

Beacon Health Options - Platinum

Beacon is a leading behavioral health services company serving the full spectrum of behavioral health needs and specializing in complex, high acuity populations. The company offers proven solutions for a broad client base that includes employers, regional and specialty health plans, and federal, state, and local governments.

Behavioral health is all we do at Beacon Health Options. Were honored to be recognized for living our values and helping our employees live their lives to the fullest. saidRussell C. Petrella, Ph.D., president and CEO of Beacon Health Options.At Beacon, we have a longstanding dedication to the emotional well-being of our employees. In return, we enable our employees to thrive which helps us thrive as an organization.

EAB - Platinum

EAB is an education firm that partners with colleges, universities, and K-12 schools across North America and abroad to foster student success at every level. EAB is headquartered in Washington, DC, with additional offices in Birmingham, AL; Minneapolis, MN; New York, NY; and Richmond, VA.

EAB is proud to have been platinum certified by MHA as it recognizes our commitment to bolstering the health and wellness of our employees, saidEAB Chief Executive Officer David Felsenthal. We work hard to create a culture where employees feel safe seeking support for any issue that might impact their ability to bring their full selves to work each day.

Dallas Fort Worth Airport (DFW) - Platinum

DFW Airport is the worlds fourth busiest airport for flights and welcomes more than 73 million customers every year. As one of the most frequently visited superhub airports in the world, DFW has flights to 193 domestic and 67 international nonstop destinations. DFW Airport is one of the largest economic drivers for the North Texas Region, directing $37 billion each year into the local economy.

At DFW Airport, we believe taking care of your mental health is just as important as your physical health. We want to remove the stigma associated with emotional health by encouraging our employees and their families to take advantage of the emotional well-being benefits and resources available through our employee assistance program Safe Landings, saidSean Donohue,CEO of DFW Airport. We are committed to providing a culture that promotes overall health mental and physical for employees. Organizations have a responsibility to help support an employees total well-being.

Ashland Chemical Inc. - Silver

Ashland is a premier global specialty materials company serving customers in a wide range of consumer and industrial markets, including adhesives, architectural coatings, automotive, construction, energy, food and beverage, nutraceuticals, personal care and pharmaceutical. Ashland has approximately 4,700 passionate, tenacious solvers from renowned scientists and research chemists to talented engineers and plant operators who thrive on developing practical, innovative and elegant solutions to complex problems for customers in more than 100 countries.

The Ashland Way calls for each of our solvers around the globe to respect, protect, and advance the people we work with, companies we serve, shareholders who invest in our future, communities we're a part of, and planet we share, saidKeith Silverman, Senior Vice President, Global Operations, Quality and Environmental, Health, and Safety (EHS). Our vision is to continue educating about drug and alcohol addiction and mental illness for employees and their families at all Ashland sites.

The workplace is one of the most important places to address mental health. An employer can improve workplace culture, offer generous health insurance and other benefits, and commit to mental health from the top-down to cultivate a worker-friendly, highly productive, and psychologically safe workplace. Hopefully this new workplace mental health certification from MHA will inspire more companies to prioritize mental health.

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New Mental Health Certification Will Help Create Healthier Workplaces - Forbes

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