If you’re reading this, it means you’re either an employer looking into a mental health policy for your company or an employee trying to affect change! Both options are super rad and I’m glad you’re here.
This is a major topic that likely hits home with you or someone you know - no "6 degrees of separation" here. 1 in 5 Americans are living with a mental illness according to a 2019 study from the National Institute of Mental Health. Above that, we ALL have a duty to be working on maintaining our mental health. Yet our society demands that employees to be perfect, to be all-on all the time. It's time to shake that sh*t up and get real with ourselves and our employees!
Yesterday, I got the chance to share in a webinar what we're doing at Doughp to support mental health; inside and outside the company. I really struck a nerve with the audience who was eager to see if I had a template I could share to encourage other businesses to do the same.
So here it is! The below is a template based off the mental health policy established at Doughp, a mission-driven cookie dough company. Take what works for your company and adjust to accordingly.
The following can be included in Offer Letter, Employment Agreement, or other company policy documentation. Up to you! The “Mental Health Days” should you choose to implement them should also be referenced wherever time-off policies are discussed. Consult with your legal or human resources representative where needed as I'm not a licensed professional.
Be easy on yourself and your team as these discussions can stir up varying emotions. If an employee or colleague is choosing to share something happening in their life, the best thing you can do is to listen, ensure they feel heard, and of course if anyone is in danger of hurting themselves or others, seek professional help immediately.
You’re one step in the right direction just by exploring this! Read on and see what works for you. Together, we can have a real impact on how the employer-employee relationship works out and realize how much stronger it can be when we let our people be people, accepted for who they were and who they are today.
Have a Doughp day!
Founder + Fearless Leader, Doughp
Mental Health Policy @ [Company Name]
Mental Health Days: We know life happens sometimes. This is a no-questions-asked day-off when you need it. When things get tough and you just can’t make it happen, don’t try and “fake it til you make it” - just let us know you need a mental health day, and we’ve got your back. The company will do what it takes to cover your work and no judgement nor penalty will be held against you. Reset, recover, and come back when you’re ready.
- All employees receive unlimited mental health days. Part-time are allotted 2 paid mental health days per [MONTH/QUARTER/YEAR, DECIDE WHAT’S RIGHT FOR YOUR COMPANY].
Mental Health Care Subsidy: [COMPANY NAME] will subsidize 50% of mental health care services (therapy, float spas, massages, self-help books, etc.) up to $500/year per employee.
SUPPORTING EACH OTHER:
Open Heart Policy: Though our work becomes a big part of our lives, at [COMPANY NAME] we know there’s way more happening outside of the work world. Human-ing is HARD, don’t go through it alone. Our Open Heart Policy extends through every level of management, encouraging open, honest and judgement-free conversation inside and outside the business. If you’re not feeling 100%, we’ve got you.
Mental Health Mondays: Every Monday, on our [SLACK CHANNEL OR OTHER INTERNAL COMMS], we ask each employee to share one high and one low from the week before. These can be personal, professional, and anything in between! A chance to support each other, get closer to one another, and provide help if needed.
SUPPORTING THE WORLD:
- Company Donations:
Sales: The company donates 1% of all sales to [INSERT NONPROFIT] to support [NONPROFIT’S CAUSE].
Refunds: In the event a refund should occur for a customer, the company also offers customers an opportunity to either receive their refund or have it donated to the above non-profit with our quarterly donations.
Employee Donation Matching: Together we can have a serious impact on the mental health community. In addition to the company’s sales donations, [COMPANY NAME] will match employee donations made to any mental health or addiction recovery non-profits, up to $1,000/year per employee.