Hands up - How many of you have felt stigma towards mental illness at your place?
I remember a specific moment for me. A few years ago I was at a meeting with my boss and other co-workers. They were discussing another co-worker. At some point they found out (possibly she told them) she had Bipolar Disorder. I listened as they snickered and talked about her illness as if it was a joke. There was some “Get over it”s and some “What a drama queen”s. My mouth fell open but I’m embarrassed to say I didn’t speak up. I felt scared. Here were these three superiors in my work place speaking horribly about a girl’s illness that I have as well.
500,000 people in Canada miss work each week due to mental illness. 44% of workers say they have dealt with mental health issues and only 23% said they would talk about their mental health issues with their employer.
So that’s where Not Myself Today comes in.
Not Myself Today is a Partners for Mental Health run campaign that happens every spring. The campaign partners with organizations by giving them support, tools, and resources to educate and engage employees around this issue. The campaign was created to reduce stigma in the work place and improve mental health at work.
Not Myself Today homes to assist companies in achieving the following outcomes:
- Better understanding of one’s own mental health
- Reducing stigma
- Fostering a safe, open, and supportive work environment
Since 2013 over 320 work places have participated in Not Myself Today and in 2016 alone, over 150 have signed up!
If you are interested in finding out more about Not Myself Today for your work place or what you can do as an individual, visit www.notmyselftoday.ca