White House Roundtable Focuses on Mental Health in the Workplace — Occupational Health and Safety

White House roundtable focuses on mental health in the workplace

Those gathered for the roundtable included mental health experts and members of government agencies.

By Alex SaurmanMay 26, 2023

Over the past few years, especially since the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic, more and more people have had conversations about worker mental health.

Also this week, “federal employees… union leaders, EAP providers, and mental health experts and advocates” along with “representatives from the Domestic Policy Council, Department of Labor (DOL), Bureau of Personnel Management (OPM) and the Department of Veterans Affairs” met at the White House for a roundtable on this topic, according to a press release.

These participants addressed several topics, including those where change is needed, such as the stigma surrounding mental health, stress and supports, according to the press release.

“Mental health-friendly workplaces can have a significant positive impact on the lives of workers, and that certainly includes those of federal employees,” said Assistant Secretary for Disability Employment Policy Taryn Williams, in the press release.

Some agencies intervened on more specific subjects. The DOL talked about its workplace mental health initiative, and the OPM, which recently released an employee wellness program guide, touched on employee assistance programs.

“Employee wellness programs are an essential part of supporting our workforce,” Rob Shriver, OPM Deputy Director, said in the press release. “These programs give leaders at all levels the tools and resources they need to promote and sustain wellness. We know that EAPs play an important role in reducing the negative stigma associated with seeking care. mental health and in promoting supportive and safe workplaces.”

Earlier this week, the DOL also released a public service announcement titled “Mental Health in the Workplace”.

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