BROMSGROVE District Council became the latest organisation to sign up to a national pledge to reduce the stigma surrounding mental health.
Council leader Margaret Sherrey put pen to paper at the full council meeting on Monday (January 19) on behalf of the authority.
The pledge was made as part of the Time to Change campaign being run by charities Mind and Rethink Mental Illness.
Coun Sherrey said by signing it, the council was embarking on a journey to bring about long-term change.
“It publicly displays our support as a council to tackling mental health stigma and discrimination.
“In this commitment, we are helping support staff in our own organisation first, and thereafter seeking to inspire the future generations to take action.”
She added the council currently supported staff through occupational health, but the pledge would help further improve the wider understanding of the issues and reduce any stigma and isolation staff experiencing mental health issues may face.
Among the propsals outlined were the introduction of a training and awareness programme, regular events to support staff, a vow to enhance the authority’s ‘Phone a Friend’ network and to understand more by surveying all staff.
The council will also be publishing a directory of support networks and working with health trainers to deliver health checks and support
The pledge received unanimous support and Coun Rory Shannon, from the Labour Group, also spoke in support of it at the meeting.
“Talking about mental illness is the key to dealing with the problem.
“It’s a silent killer and we have we lose too many people every year when we could be helping them.
“Hopefully this pledge will mean more people who need help can get it.” he added.
Visit www.timeforchange.org.uk for more on the Time to Change campaign.