On Monday 7th February 2022, we were proud to sign the Time to Change employer pledge to change the way we think and act around mental health at work.
By signing the pledge, we join hundreds of organisations in stepping up to challenge mental health stigma.
The pledge was signed at an internal event where staff and Board Members were joined by June from Time to Change Wales who shared a few words about the importance of the pledge and how committing to the action plan will help to foster positive working practices.
Our Information Officer and Time to Change champion, Alex, further highlighted the importance of committing to the action plan by candidly speaking about her personal experiences with mental health. Board Member, Kelvin, joined her in sharing some of his own story in what was a touching and empowering event.
Our Chief Executive, Rhian Davies, signed the pledge on behalf of the organisation. Reflecting on its significance, she said:
“I am very proud to sign the Time to Change pledge on behalf of Disability Wales and demonstrate our commitment to positive working practices and support for staff and Directors regarding mental health and wellbeing. The pandemic has significantly raised awareness of mental health issues, however within DW we have long known how disabling barriers in society impact negatively on mental health. We pledge to continue challenging discrimination and stigma in all its forms and working towards a more inclusive society which enables everyone to flourish.”
The pledge and subsequent action plan will hold professional and personal significance to DW’s staff and Board Members, as Alex explains:
“All too often disabled people’s mental health is ignored or belittled, with little thought given to the effect impairments or health conditions may have on a person’s wellbeing, and no mental health support offered. This particularly became clear to me when I was diagnosed with MS, I was offered no support and told since it is a lifelong condition, I just needed to “learn to live with it”. Since joining DW I have felt very supported. I worked to create the Action Plan to help my colleagues feel comfortable talking about their wellbeing so no one felt they had to push through poor mental health alone. We need to continue to challenge the stigma that surrounds mental health by talking openly.”
We are delighted to bring the Time to Change campaign to Disability Wales but this is only the beginning of our journey. We look forward to working with staff and Board Members to implement the action plan and refreshing it together.