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Mental health is the next frontier of diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI).
The experiences of mental health at work are diverse, but many employees who manage mental health conditions face shame, stigma, and discrimination at work.
Companies that reduce this stigma can increase engagement, productivity, and belonging across communities by starting the dialogue and providing support.
Mental health includes a spectrum of experiences.
From the 1 in 5 employees who manage a diagnosable condition in any given year to the 60% of all employees who reported symptoms of a mental health condition in the past year, every employee exists somewhere on the spectrum of mental health.
Mental health affects all levels of the organization.
Research shows that symptoms of mental health conditions are just as prevalent across seniority levels within organizations. In fact, some conditions are even higher in high-performing professionals like entrepreneurs.
Mental health challenges can strengthen teams and organizations.
Recent media and insights from our professional communities have surfaced ways in which mental health challenges benefit workplaces, from creative thinking and attention to detail to increased empathy as a manager.
But mental health is often stigmatized and marginalized.
Mental health has always been considered taboo in Asian culture—we simply don’t talk about these things, at home or in public. We end up repressing, denying, or ignoring the existence of any mental health issues.
From "Workplace Mental Health for Asian American Professionals" by Mind Share Partners
How does mental health differ across various demographic groups?
Every demographic group—and those at their intersections—experience mental health in the workplace differently. In fact, demographic groups that are not historically underrepresented diversity and inclusion groups, such as men and millennials, actually face unique challenges when it comes to mental health.
Scroll to read about the differences in mental health experiences for women, men, the LGBTQ+ community, racial and ethnic minorities, as well as millennials and Gen Z.
Women are more open to getting treatment and are up to 40% more likely than men to have been diagnosed and treated for a mental health condition in the past.
Women are twice as likely to experience depression, anxiety, and PTSD.
Women make up 85-95% of anorexia or bulimia diagnoses.
As a transgender woman, it can be hard to shake the stigma that I’m mentally ill, simply by nature of being who I am. Even with institutions such as the WHO publicly stating that it’s not a mental illness, it seems some people refuse to believe that a transgender person is not “crazy.”
From "Workplace Mental Health for LGBTQ+ Professionals" by Mind Share Partners
Learn more about the unique mental health experiences in workplaces across demographic groups in Mind Share Partners' Mental Health at Work 2019 Report.
How to support mental health through diversity, equity, and inclusion initiatives.
Successful DEI programs in the workplace require policies, programs, and practices that advocate for employees facing mental health challenges.
Are you a DEI leader who wants to support mental health at your company?
Mind Share Partners offers workshops and advising services that teach companies to name, normalize, and navigate mental health at work.
Looking to learn more about mental health and DEI?
Read about the mental health experiences demographic groups in our articles featuring stories from real professionals.
Or watch our virtual panel with Culture Amp on DEI & mental health.
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