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The Corporate Mental Health Alliance Australia launches

The Corporate Mental Health Alliance Australia launches
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Australian businesses unite to tackle mental health in the workplace.

Federal Minister for Health, the Hon Greg Hunt MP, joined leaders from some of Australia’s largest employers to launch the Corporate Mental Health Alliance Australia (CMHAA), a business-led, expert-guided member organisation dedicated to improving mental health in the workplace. This Alliance is part of an international network, that includes CMHA UK and CMHA Hong.

The Alliance’s 15 founding members and participants – many of them direct competitors – recognise that the mental wellbeing of their employees transcends market dynamics, and that working together will give them the best chance of delivering real impact for their people. These members and participants include AIA Australia, Allianz Australia, Bunnings Group, Clayton Utz, Coles Group, Commonwealth Bank, Deloitte, DLA Piper, Johnson & Johnson Family of Companies, King & Wood Mallesons, KPMG, Microsoft Australia, Minter, Ellison, Woolworths Group and PwC Australia.

The establishment of CMHAA comes at a time when mental health issues in the workplace are increasing in prevalence. According to Safe Work Australia, more than 92% of work-related mental health condition claims can be attributed to work-related mental stress including work pressure, harassment or bullying, exposure to workplace violence and sexual or racial harassment.

Steven Worrall, Chair of CMHAA and Managing Director of Microsoft Australia,  said now more than ever, businesses across the board need to come together and take collective responsibility for creating mentally healthy workplaces.

“We can do this firstly by sharing what we’re each doing in the workplace to support our people’s mental health and wellbeing. None of us think we have all the answers, but we’re all doing lots of things, and in many cases, lots of really good things to support our people who are struggling with mental illness or anxiety. It’s on us as leaders to put mental health at the heart of the business agenda, and to bring our collective experience and resources to the attention of other businesses looking to make improvements in this area. We are an alliance for all businesses, large and small alike.”

Poppy Jaman, CEO of CMHA UK, spoke at the virtual launch and has been involved in helping to establish CMHAA right from the beginning. She said:

“I am proud that the CMHAA has launched, with such energy and sense of purpose from so many businesses. Congratulations to Steve, Vicki and the whole team for bringing this all together. We have seen the impact that this collaborative model can have in other geographic regions, to progress the workplace mental health agenda and I have no doubt it will also achieve great success here."  

Anchored around three strategic priorities – Provide Safe Settings Empower Our Leaders , and Drive Lasting Change  – and with the support of mental health experts, CMHAA members will work together to find, test and deliver solutions that work for their people.

You can watch the virtual launch of the CMHAA here.

CMHAA is receiving expressions of interest for membership beginning in 2021.