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Employees who are facing mistreatment and harassment at workplace need to speak up and report such incidents to their respective superiors.
Mental Illness Awareness and Support Association president Anita Abu Bakar said supporting positive mental health among employees was just as important as promoting good physical health.
She said occurrences of abuse, harassment and mistreatment at office could affect the mental health of victims, which could lead to the development of serious mental illnesses including depression.
“It is important to talk about issues of mental health in the workplace. Those who faces discrimination, bullying or harassment need to speak up. Change can only be made if we start talking about it,” she said.
“With the stress people experiencing during the COVID-19 pandemic, it is important to maintain a harmony working environment in the office. Managers must also learn the way to resolve conflict among employees,” Anita said during an online awareness programme “Mental Health in the Workplace” organised by Boustead Plantations Berhad.
The programme aimed to improve staff awareness on mental health issues as well as to assist employees coping with the new normal working environment.
The two-hour programme was officiated by BPB Chief Executive Officer Zainal Abidin Shariff and attended by more than 100 BPB staff.
In his remarks, Zainal Abidin urged employees to continuously check in with their fellow co-workers and be alert on their current conditions.
“Sometimes, without us realising, it was the person next to us that are actually dealing with mental health issues,” he said.
“Therefore, we need to always be on alert with our surroundings, especially with our friends in office. Sometimes, a simple ‘how are you’ means a lot to them,” he added.
Zainal Abidin said awareness on mental health need to be done progressively as many were impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic.
“Such awareness conforms to the principles of Environmental, Social and Governance (ESG) that is currently being actively pursued by the Group.
“The programme today fulfils the company’s social responsibility in creating a sustainable workplace for the employees,” he added.