Mindful Employer

MINDFUL EMPLOYER® is a UK-wide initiative aimed at increasing awareness of mental health in the workplace.  The University of Oxford signed Mindful Employer's Charter for Employers Who Are Positive About Mental Health in February 2018.  By doing this we show our willingness to work towards the principles of the Charter, and our commitment to supporting staff wellbeing. 

Despite the name, Mindful Employer isn't all about mindfulness (although that may be useful tool for some people).  We are using this as a framework for developing our Oxford-specific action plan for developing a culture that is more supportive of staff mental health, alongside our support for od student mental health.

Charter For Employers Who Are Positive About Mental Health

 As an employer we recognise that:

  • People who have mental health issues may have experienced discrimination in recruitment and selection procedures. This may discourage them from seeking employment.
  • Whilst some people will acknowledge their experience of mental health issues in a frank and open way, others fear that stigma will jeopardise their chances of getting a job.
  • Given appropriate support, the vast majority of people who have experienced mental ill health continue to work successfully as do many with ongoing issues.

 As an employer we aim to:

  • Show a positive and enabling attitude to employees and job applicants with mental health issues. This will include positive statements in local recruitment literature.
  • Ensure that all staff involved in recruitment and selection are briefed on mental health issues and The Equality Act 2010*, and given appropriate interview skills.
  • Make it clear in any recruitment or occupational health check that people who have experienced mental health issues will not be discriminated against and that disclosure of a mental health problem will enable both employee and employer to assess and provide the right level of support or adjustment.
  • Not make assumptions that a person with a mental health problem will be more vulnerable to workplace stress or take more time off than any other employee or job applicant.
  • Provide non-judgemental and proactive support to individual staff who experience mental health issues.
  • Ensure all line managers have information and training about managing mental health in the workplace.

Mindful Employer Steering Group

We have set up a Mindful Employer Steering Group (MESG) to oversee our work in developing and implementing an action plan to improve our support for staff mental health.

To find out more please contact equality@admin.ox.ac.uk