We’ve called on the Government and employers to improve access to counselling for women facing challenges that have an impact on their work.
Our Workplace Division responded to a ‘call for evidence’ put out by Women at Work All Party Parliamentary Group (APPG)
APPGs are informal, cross party groups of members of the House of Commons and Lords.
The evidence submitted will help inform the group’s work once it resumes after December’s General Election.
Our response explained that women are more likely to be affected by poor mental health and wellbeing at work than men.
It included looking at how issues such as the menopause and reproductive health conditions can affect women’s mental health and wellbeing in the workplace
We said how workplace counsellors can help in these situations.
Julie Hughes, Chair of BACP’s Workplace Division Executive, said: “We welcome this opportunity to contribute to the call for evidence.
“It’s vitally important that Government, employers and stakeholders understand the challenges facing women at work, many of whom suffer being stigmatised by chronic physical and mental health conditions.
“If we are to create genuinely inclusive, healthier, places to work we need action at the levels of policy and practice – with workplace counsellors uniquely positioned to help employees and employers.”
The key recommendations of our report are:
▪ We’re supporting calls to normalise menopause as a workplace issue and urge employers to review policies around sickness absence and performance that could unfairly penalise women.
▪ We’re calling on the Government to ensure that women and families have access to specialist perinatal mental health services, including counselling, as part of an integrated pathway of care.
▪ We’re calling for dialogue among employers, policy makers and health professionals, to raise awareness of chronic gynaecological and reproductive health conditions and their impact on mental health.
▪ We recommend that the Government builds evidence on the prevalence and causes of mental health problems in women at work.
Duty of care
The submission added: “BACP believes that health and wellbeing are key strands of responsible business and that employers have a duty of care towards their employees. This includes taking steps to minimise work-related stress, build resilience in their staff and provide workplace counselling.”
Read more about our work to support the counselling workforce.