CONVERSATION WITH CATHERINE LOUREY, NSW MENTAL HEALTH COMMISSIONER
Whether you have experienced a mental illness or not, it is likely that you know someone who has. Research run by the Australian Government state that out of every 5 employed Australians, 1 is living and working with a mental illness. In today’s podcast, we welcome NSW Mental Health Commissioner Catherine Lourey to a discussion on mental illness and why this is an issue for the whole community.
The impact that a mental illness can have goes far beyond the individual sufferer; it affects your family, your friends, your work and your community. Today’s businesses are recognising the benefits of an office environment that promotes employee health and wellness. Mental stress caused by work can have an adverse effect on the organisation, including the rising costs of absenteeism and presenteeism, poor employee productivity and poor performance on the job.
According to Lourey only 25% of Australian businesses are addressing their employee’s mental health at work. This podcast discusses how organisations can take preventative action against mental illness in the workforce and why they should start to intervene.
Lourey also talks about why we need to replace societies old, limited views on mental health. According to Lourey, who has had first hand experience in human services, public policy and public housing, mental illness is a lived experience. Like any other disease or illness, mental illness is experienced differently by every individual with a different degree of impact on their life. Evidence shows that mental illness is an experience that you can recover from, and by providing sufferers with a community that facilitates and supports this process, rather than one that has been known to discriminate; people will be able to manage themselves faster.
How can government organisations, businesses and the community begin to work together to support each other’s mental health and wellbeing? Lourey provides you with the characteristics of a “mentally healthy” workplace including why we need self-agency, what the right policies are, the importance of leadership, the importance of supportive colleagues and why we need to create an inclusive office space.
Our work place is essentially our community, and a great business should be able to manage the health and wellbeing of their staff.
Listen and find out how you can start contributing to a mentally healthy workplace…
In this week’s podcast listen to:
- What is the NSW Mental Health Commission? (02:16)
- Building resilience (04:13)
- What is “Lived Experience”? (12:15)
- The characteristics of a mentally health workplace (16:00s)
- The flip side (17:20)
- Fighting the stigma (20:47)
- It’s a community responsibility (28:49)
Host: Terry Robson
Special Guest: Catherine Lourey
Producer: Charles Hunter
Writer: Brianna Stephenson