The impact of workplace mental health support method usage on mental health stigma within the workplace. (2020)
Type of ContentElectronic Thesis or Dissertation
Degree NameMaster of Science
PublisherUniversity of Canterbury
AuthorsHallaway, Scottshow all
The rise in mental health awareness within the New Zealand workforce has stimulated the increased availability of Employee Assistance Programmes (EAPs) and much debate around the use of mental health days to cope with mental health issues. At the same time mental health stigma is still present within the New Zealand workforce. The present study aims to explore whether the usage of such support methods can lower workplace mental health stigma, along with the role past experience with such support methods plays on mental health stigma. In order to investigate the impact of support method usage on mental health stigma, 253 working adults in Christchurch based organisations were presented with three scenarios, involving a colleague disclosing a mental health issue to the participant along with what support method the colleague was using to cope with their mental health. Each of the three scenarios differed in the method of support used (EAPs, mental health days, or the non- usage of a support method (presenteeism)). Participants then rated their agreement with common assumptions of workplace mental health stigma across the three scenarios. Agreement with all assumptions of workplace stigma were lower in the scenarios where the colleague was using an EAP or mental health day. The effect of past experience with EAPs or mental health days on workplace mental health stigma proved inconclusive. These findings suggest that disclosing the method of support one uses to cope with their mental health issues could reduce the mental health stigma felt towards that individual within the workplace.