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Mayor of Greater Manchester launched This is Me North West as our campaign goes national!

This is Me, the campaign to end the stigma around mental health in the workplace, went national last week during Mental Health Awareness week, with its launch in Manchester attended by almost 200 businesses and the Mayor of Greater Manchester, Andy Burnham.

This is Me, a campaign which has been developed by The Lord Mayor’s Appeal in London was initiated by Barclays. In the North West the campaign is being driven by Barclays and PwC together with organisations like Sellafield, United Utilities, Manchester Airport Group, football clubs and mental health charities, to demonstrate to their employees that it is important to talk about mental health.   

The audience of business people from the North West heard directly from Beth Graham of PwC, Christine Meakins of Barclays and Garry Brigland of United Utilities, who shared their personal stories of mental health at work and the enormous difference an organisation can make when it is open, supportive and prepared to talk about mental health. This is Me North West filmed for the launch can be viewed here.

Christine, a Director at Barclays in Cheshire, suffered from stress and exhaustion back in 2014 and feared that she’d never return to work.

 “I hope that by sharing my story I can help others who are struggling with their mental health. By talking about mental health issues we reduce the stigma around it and we normalise it. And when we normalise mental health we take a huge step towards making things better.”

Andy Burnham, Mayor of Greater Manchester, said at the launch: “We need a revolution in the way we talk about mental health. Because there is a stigma, people keep quiet and don’t seek help, they go through it alone afraid of recriminations and afraid they might lose their job. We need to do something to make it commonplace to ask for help and know it won’t lead to recriminations. We will put our full support behind This is Me and I can see no better way to celebrate the 70th anniversary of the NHS than with a revolution in the way we talk about mental health. This is the campaign of the moment.”

Many of the people in the room including the Mayor, were wearing the Green Ribbon which is a visible symbol of support to show those struggling that they are not alone. Other This is Me activity during Mental Health Awareness Week included the lighting up in green of Manchester Town Hall and the distribution of many more Green Ribbons.

Any business in the North West who is interested in finding out more about This is Me should go to www.greatermanchester-ca.gov.uk/ThisisMe

If you are interested in helping roll out This is me into your region, please let us known at diversity@thelordmayorsappeal.org

 

Key dates

10th October 2018 World Mental Health Day