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Time to Talk Day: Usdaw campaigns to promote mental health awareness and rights at work

Date: 03 February 2022 Retail trade union Usdaw is marking today’s ‘Time to Talk Day’ by promoting the role of trade union workplace reps in supporting members and highlighting the benefits of mental health conversations.
‘Time to Talk Day’ this year is on Thursday 3 February and aims to support communities to have more mental health conversations. It is run by Mind and Rethink Mental Illness in England, in partnership with Co-op, along with Scottish Association for Mental Health and See Me in Scotland, Inspire and Change Your Mind in Northern Ireland and Time to Change Wales: timetotalkday.co.uk
 
Paddy Lillis – Usdaw General Secretary says: “Usdaw has long recognised that mental health is a trade union and workplace issue.  The last couple of years have proved to be a stressful and worrying time for almost everyone, but for Usdaw members the pressures of the coronavirus pandemic have been compounded by their experience as key workers.
 
“They now face a cost of living crisis and we know that money worries are a significant trigger for mental health problems. With increases in energy, food and fuel costs, along with the Government’s 10% National Insurance increase looming, these pressures on workers are only likely to get worse.
 
“Usdaw reps are campaigning on mental health to raise awareness of workplace rights and tackle stigma, which can get in the way of members talking to the union at an early stage. This can lead to them getting caught up in disciplinary procedures that could and should have been avoided. Our reps play a crucial role in ensuring members have a say in their work role and environment, to help keep them safe and promote good mental health.
 
“Time to Talk Day is an important annual event that reaches millions of people and highlights the link between talking about mental health, seeking support and recovery. Usdaw supports the work of mental health organisations and pays credit to every lay-rep for all they do to support members at work.”
 
Usdaw’s ‘It’s good to talk’ campaign provides the union’s workplace reps with advice and resources to support members experiencing a common mental health problem such as depression or anxiety. For more information: www.usdaw.org.uk/Help-Advice/Health-Wellbeing/Mental-Health
 
Notes for editors:
 
Usdaw (Union of Shop, Distributive and Allied Workers) is the UK's fifth biggest trade union with over 380,000 members. Most Usdaw members work in the retail sector, but the union also has many members in transport, distribution, food manufacturing, chemical industry and other trades.
 
For Usdaw press releases visit: http://www.usdaw.org.uk/news and you can follow us on Twitter @UsdawUnion

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