WFMH Report: Mental Health in the Workplace

WFMH Report: Mental Health in the Workplace


October 10th 2017 marks World Mental Health Day for the 25th time! World Federation for Mental Health (WFMH) founded the awareness day in 1992 and since then people all over the world are holding events, making announcements and celebrating #WorldMentalHealthDay.

WFMH President, Gabriel Ivbijaro (2015-2017)

  • One in four adults will experience mental health difficulties, yet prejudice and discrimination are significant barriers that deprive people of their dignity. To make dignity in mental health a reality requires every member of society to work together. It requires action in the community and, importantly, in the workplace.
  • One in five people in the workplace experience a mental health condition, and while many employers are developing policies to support a healthy workforce, there is no shared vision for mental health in the workplace.
  • Our vision, therefore, is to start the discussion so that we can define best practice in promoting mental health in the workplace and create a broad coalition to promote best practice, decrease negative attitudes and discrimination and empower individuals to promote mental health and dignity for all. This focus builds on the recent World Bank’s identification of mental health as a Global Development Priority which recognizes the critical impact mental health has on economic development and well-being. Annual global costs of mental health problems are estimated at 2.5 trillion U.S. dollars and expected to rise to 6 trillion U.S. dollars by 2030.
  • Employment is critical in promoting recovery – for individuals, communities, and nations. However, estimates show that up to 80% of individuals with serious mental illnesses are unemployed while 70% want to work. In the U.S. alone, it is estimated that major mental health disorders cost the nation at least $193 billion annually in lost earnings alone.
  • To address these issues, it is imperative to engage businesses, employers, legal rights advocates, unions, mental health providers, families, service users, and others to promote meaningful employment for people who experience mental health problems.

If you'd like to show your support for this year's World Mental Health Day, the World Federation for Mental Health have some great tips on how to raise awareness and spread the message in their communications guide.


Research summaries and systematic reviews
Detection and diagnosis
Empowerment and service user involvement
Policy and legislation
Training, education and capacity building
All mental health conditions
Central America and the Caribbean
Middle East
North America
South America