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Mental Health in Hospitality
Team Offbeat | 17 May

It is mental health awareness week, so what better time to have a look at how mental health effects the hospitality sector and what business owners can do to help.

A survey by Unite reported that 51% of London Chefs said that they suffer from depression due to being overworked. Many chefs burn out early due to bullying, long hours and a high-pressure working environment.

Chef and Restauranteur Andrew Clarke launches Pilot Light this week – a campaign designed to raise awareness of mental health in hospitality. Teaming up with Doug Sanham, in partnership with Time to Change, Andrew hopes to change the way people think about mental health.

So, how can we help?

Raise Awareness

It is all about raising awareness and getting people to talk about mental health problems. Employees suffering in silence are unlikely to be getting the help they need. If you are unsure about where to start, the Pilot Light website provides a range of resources and guides to help point employers in the right direction.

Provide Support

Employees living with mental health problems such as depression and anxiety can and do make a valuable contribution to the workplace, but support is paramount. Providing empathy and understanding through open dialogue is important. Offering regular catch-ups and assistance for employees sends a message that their contribution is valued. Additionally, employers have a duty to make reasonable adjustments which could include anything from adapting working hours, roles and responsibilities to providing regular breaks and comfortable staff areas.

Eradicate Stigma

Finally, we need to eradicate the perceived stigma around mental health. We can help to achieve this by creating a positive and open culture when addressing mental health issues in the workplace. It is time to look out for each other and ensure hospitality is a more welcoming, inclusive environment for those with mental health issues.

By Charlotte Phillips

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