Bauer Media has launched a mental health survey which has revealed that 90% of the public say they still feel there is a taboo around discussing mental health, and has launched a petition calling on the government to make it a requirement for every workplace or college to have a mental health work aider in the UK – equal to the legal requirement for a physical first-aider.

The survey is part of Bauer Media’s campaign: ‘Where’s Your Head At?’ which surveyed readers and listeners from their leading media brands including, heat, Grazia, KISS, Empire, Magic and Absolute Radio in collaboration with mental health campaigner Natasha Devon MBE and the Mental Health First Aid (MFHA)  England and has uncovered a revealing picture of the nation’s mental health. The results of the survey will be brought to life during Mental Health Awareness Week (14th – 20th of May) with coverage across Bauer’s influential magazine, radio and online brands.

86% of the men and women who responded to the poll agreed that mental health is one of the biggest challenges facing the country today and over a third (33%) of those people said they are more stressed now than they were a couple of years ago.  

Contrary to popular opinion, only 16% of people blame social media for having a negative impact on their mental health. In fact, the single biggest worry was money (58%) while 47% said their workload impacted their mental wellbeing. 

Despite recent positive steps towards a more open dialogue about mental health, including the launch of Princes William and Harry’s charity Heads Together, 90% of those questioned still feel that there remains a taboo in speaking about mental health issues in the UK.

Astonishingly, 56% of people questioned said they have experienced a mental health issue, debunking the previous thinking that it was ‘1 in 4’ and the ‘1 in 3’ that most experts have drawn on in the past.

63% of respondents reported that they have gone through a period of depression and 42% have experienced a panic attack.

Almost half (47%) said they don’t feel they have a good work/life balance, unsurprisingly this was particularly high for those living in London. Over half (56%) of respondents said that if they had to take time off work due to stress/anxiety then they would tell their boss the truth, but this was lower for those living in London.

15% of respondents taken time off work as a direct result of stress/anxiety in the last year, this was higher amongst females than males.

Bauer has recently trained 7 members of its HR team to be mental health first aiders and provides access to professional support via wellbeing organisation NABS and an Employee Assistance programme. It’s also recently piloted a Thrive Wellness Week at its Peterborough Office, which offered an opportunity to partake in useful, inspiring and valued content that aimed to make people healthy, happy and more resilient.

Commenting on the findings, Natasha Devon said: “I hope this will spur the government into action to protect the wellbeing of its citizens at work. These results are significant because they challenges traditional thinking about the proportion of the population affected by mental health issues and the reasons behind them.”

Speaking about the campaign, Labour Leader Jeremy Corbyn, said: “Having trained and identified people in the workplace who you can go to is very, very important. Suicide is the biggest killer of young men across the UK, and much of that comes from mental health stress that hasn’t been diagnosed or supported, or the stigma was so great they couldn’t talk about it.”

Paul Keenan, CEO Bauer Media UK + Nordics, “We are seeking to drive a vital mission: breaking the stigma attached to talking about mental health. Not only that, as an employer, wanting Bauer to be a great place to do great work, we recognise this growing challenge and the role we must play. With so many of our influential brands - across radio, publishing and online contributing towards this campaign for this new law we hope to generate a seismic attitude shift.”

Lucie Cave – Editorial Creative Director, Bauer Media – who has driven the campaign for Bauer says, “Mental Health is such important issue for our collective audiences and our survey reflects just how much of an increased worry it is for them in 2018. It’s our job as influential brands to act as their mouthpiece and do something to drive positive change.”

‘Where’s Your Head At?’ has garnered support from Labour leader, Jeremy Corbyn, & a number of celebrities including: Jamie Laing, Charlotte Crosby, Megan McKenna & Kem Cetinay who have all spoken openly about their personal struggles with mental health and have pledged their support to the petition aiming to get a mental health first aider in every workplace or college.

Bauer is working to drive signatures on a petition - www.wheresyourheadat.org - asking for it to be a legal requirement for every work place or college to have a mental health first aider. 

Notes to Editors:

Survey results are based on a sample size of 1,565 people, 622 (40%) and 942 (60%) female. All respondents consume at least one of Bauer Media’s brands.

Each of the brands taking part in this campaign has created content specific to their audience, including interviews with celebrities who have suffered mental health issues and it will be running over the next few weeks.

Natasha Devon's book A Beginner's Guide to Being Mental: An A-Z from Anxiety to Zero F**ks Given is published by Bluebird Books on Thursday 17th May.

About Bauer Media UK:

Bauer Media UK reaches over 25 million UK consumers through a portfolio of world-class, multi-platform media and entertainment brands including heat, KISS, Grazia, Empire, Magic, Absolute Radio and the Hits Radio Network. It creates and curates entertaining media content that audiences love whenever, wherever and however they want through a multi-channel strategy and a focus on product excellence and audience insight.  The result is an exciting array of influential brands, content and talent which provide compelling and engaging advertising opportunities with valuable audiences for UK commercial partners.  Bauer Media UK is part of the Bauer Media Group, one of the world’s largest privately owned media businesses with media assets all over the globe. 

For Further information:

Cat Martin - Communications Director, Bauer Media

0207 432 3317/07932 746363

cat.martin@bauermedia.co.uk

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