Need support for your mental health at work?

 

Able Futures can help you manage your mental health at work so you can enjoy more good days. If eligible they provide you nine months advice and guidance from a mental health specialist who can help you learn coping mechanisms, build resilience, access therapy or work with your employer to make adjustments to help your mental health at work.

Call Able Futures free on 0800 321 3137 from 8 am to 10.30pm, Monday to Friday or apply online.

Able Futures delivers the Access to Work Mental Health Support Service on behalf of the Department for Work and Pensions. It could be available to you if you can answer “yes” to the following questions:

  • Are you aged 16 or over?
  • Are you in work, on an apprenticeship, about to start work or furloughed?
  • Do you live in Great Britain?
  • Do you have mental health difficulties that impact upon your work?

This list is not exhaustive and it is ultimately up to the Department of Work and Pensions Access to Work Mental Health Support Service adviser to determine eligibility.

Able Futures provide 1 – 2 – 1 support, is free and easy to use and is a confidential service.

Read case studies of people Able Futures have supported here:

https://able-futures.co.uk/mental-health-support-for-individuals/case-studies/

For further information visit the Able Futures website here:

https://able-futures.co.uk/

 

At last. Government publish the missing BAME report which includes recommendations.

The following extracts including the Recommendations are from the Executive Summary of “Beyond the data: Understanding the impact of COVID-19 on BAME groups.”(Source: https://assets.publishing.service.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/892376/COVID_stakeholder_engagement_synthesis_beyond_the_data.pdf )

“Stakeholders expressed deep dismay, anger, loss and fear in their communities about the emerging data and realities of BAME groups being harder hit by the COVID-19 Beyond the Data: Understanding the Impact of COVID-19 on BAME Communities pandemic than others, exacerbating existing inequalities. Many had lost colleagues or family members to the disease, and nearly all are experiencing the impact of the disease on their communities with the significant social, physical and mental health impacts and complications.”

“Stakeholders pointed to racism and discrimination experienced by communities and more specifically by BAME key workers as a root cause affecting health, and exposure risk and disease progression risk.”

“Strategies to create healthy and supportive workplaces (within and outside the health service) that have zero tolerance for discrimination and empower BAME staff to raise concerns about occupational risk and safety are essential.”

“The unequal impact of COVID-19 on BAME communities may be explained by a number of factors ranging from social and economic inequalities, racism, discrimination and stigma, occupational risk, inequalities in the prevalence of conditions that increase the severity of disease including obesity, diabetes, CVD and asthma.”

“The engagement sessions highlighted the BAME groups deep concern and anxiety that if lessons are not learnt from this initial phase of the epidemic, future waves of the disease could again have severe and disproportionate impacts. All were united in the commitment that urgent, collaborative and decisive action is required to avoid a repeat of this in the future.”

“Recommendations

1. Mandate comprehensive and quality ethnicity data collection and recording as part of routine NHS and social care data collection systems, including the mandatory collection of ethnicity data at death certification, and ensure that data are readily available to local health and care partners to inform actions to mitigate the impact of COVID-19 on BAME communities.

2.Support community participatory research, in which researchers and community stakeholders engage as equal partners in all steps of the research process, to understand the social, cultural, structural, economic, religious, and commercial determinants of COVID-19 in BAME communities, and to develop readily implementable and scalable programmes to reduce risk and improve health outcomes.

3. Improve access, experiences and outcomes of NHS, local government and integrated care systems commissioned services by BAME communities including: regular equity audits; use of health impact assessments; integration of equality into quality systems; good representation of black and minority ethnic communities among staff at all levels; sustained workforce development and employment practices; trust-building dialogue with service users.

4. Accelerate the development of culturally competent occupational risk assessment tools that can be employed in a variety of occupational settings and used to reduce the risk of employee’s exposure to and acquisition of COVID-19, especially for key workers working with a large cross section of the general public or in contact with those infected with COVID-19.

5. Fund, develop and implement culturally competent COVID-19 education and prevention campaigns, working in partnership with local BAME and faith communities to reinforce individual and household risk reduction strategies; rebuild trust with and uptake of routine clinical services; reinforce messages on early identification, testing and diagnosis; and prepare communities to take full advantage of interventions including contact tracing, antibody testing and ultimately vaccine availability.

6. Accelerate efforts to target culturally competent health promotion and disease prevention programmes for non-communicable diseases promoting healthy weight, physical activity, smoking cessation, mental wellbeing and effective management of chronic conditions including diabetes, hypertension and asthma.

7. Ensure that COVID-19 recovery strategies actively reduce inequalities caused by the wider determinants of health to create long term sustainable change. Fully funded, sustained and meaningful approaches to tackling ethnic inequalities must be prioritised.”

To view the full report click on the link below.

Beyond the data: Understanding the impact of COVID-19 on BAME groups.

https://assets.publishing.service.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/892376/COVID_stakeholder_engagement_synthesis_beyond_the_data.pdf

 

Barnet UNISON email Care Providers in the London Borough of Barnet

Dear Care Provider,

I hope this email finds you and your care setting well. The last weeks have been particularly gruelling for the social care sector and we recognise you have had to cope with extremely challenging and distressing situations. We believe this has been unacceptable and going forward it needs to change for the better.

You along with our members are undoubtedly aware of the Governments infection control fund which is an attempt to address the risks of infection to residents in care home settings.

UNISON fully supports this initiative both locally and nationally.

UNISON notes that London Borough of Barnet has been allocated £3,564,514 for infection control by the Government.

https://assets.publishing.service.gov.uk/media/5ec2717de90e071e30d09844/allocation-table-for-the-infection-control-fund-for-adult-social-.pdf

The Government guidance is clear that this funding should be used to pay the “normal wages” of social care workers that are absent due to COVID-19 as a measure to help reduce transmissions, so they do not feel pressured into going into work out of financial necessity.  Its intention is also to top up the wages of those doing shifts at several care homes by encouraging them to reduce the number of workplaces they visit.

To that end we are writing to as many care providers in Barnet as we can to ask them to provide the following information:

Wages and Sick Pay arrangements

  • Can you please confirm what your sick pay/ pay arrangements to cover periods of isolation are for those workers you employ?
  • Can you confirm whether you employ workers on zero hours contracts and how these would be affected by your sick pay/ isolation pay arrangements?
  • Can you confirm how you will identify the workers who would need a top up?
  • Can you confirm whether your basic minimum hourly rate of pay is above, below or at the London Living Wage (£10.75/ hr)

PPE

  • Can you confirm what PPE you have in place and in what circumstances this is used?
  • Can you confirm what training you have in place regarding the correct use of PPE?

The infection control funding is a much needed positive boost for a workforce that has been on the frontline dealing with a deadly infection that they could have never imagined they would face in a care home setting.

Please note we are widely publicising our communication to all care homes settings with our members and we will be updating them on the responses we receive through our usual social media communication platforms.

Can you please respond by close of play this Friday 19 June 2020? If you intend to respond but cannot meet the deadline of Friday could you give us an alternative date we can expect your response?

Many thanks in advance,

Stay safe.

Best wishes

Barnet UNISON

 

 

 

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