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Current Priorities of the U.S. Surgeon General: Workplace Mental Health & Well-Being

It’s no secret that workplaces affect how we go about living our lives, in good ways and in bad.

The ongoing COVID-19 pandemic just seemed to bring this topic into clearer focus.

When it comes to the current workplace landscape of the United States, recent surveys of workers found:

76% reported at least 1 symptom of a mental health condition.

84% said their workplace conditions contributed to at least 1 mental health challenge.

81% said they will be looking for workplaces that support mental health in the future.

These statistics only emphasize the need to build workplaces that center well-being and show employees that they matter.

“A healthy workforce is the foundation for thriving organizations and a healthy community”

- current U.S. Surgeon General Vivek H. Murthy, M.D., M.B.A

The Surgeon General’s Framework for Workplace Mental Health and Well-Being includes 5 Essentials that center the worker’s voice and equity and are each grounded in 2 human needs:

Protection from Harm

Creating the conditions for physical and psychological safety.

  • Safety: protecting all workers from physical and non-physical harm (i.e. injury and discrimination)

  • Security: ensuring all workers feel secure financially and in the job future

Connection & Community

Fostering positive social interactions and relationships in the workplace to support worker well-being.

  • Social Support: having networks and relationships that can offer physical and psychological help

  • Belonging: feelings of being an accepted member of a group

Work-Life Harmony

The ability to integrate work and non-work demands, for all workers.

  • Autonomy: how much control a worker has over when, where, and how they do their work

  • Flexibility: the ability of workers to work when and where is best for them

Mattering at Work

Knowing and understanding that workers matter to those around them and their work is valued.

  • Dignity: the sense of being respected and valued

  • Meaning: the sense of broader purpose and significance of one’s work in the workplace

Opportunity for Growth

Allowing workers to accomplish goals based on their skills and growth in order to help workers become more optimistic about their abilities and more enthusiastic about their contributions to the workplace.

  • Learning: acquiring new skills and knowledge in the workplace

  • Accomplishment: the outcome of meeting goals and making an impact

“Sustainable change must be driven by committed leaders in continuous collaboration with the valued workers who power each workplace. The most important asset in any organization is its people. By choosing to center their voices, we can ensure that everyone has a platform to thrive.”

- current U.S. Surgeon General Vivek H. Murthy, M.D., M.B.A.

Here at Spark This Day, we believe that these changes in the workplace towards prioritizing people should last long past the COVID-19 pandemic. We also understand that in order to do this, your needs must be at the center.

Take a look at our Spark This Day customized wellness platform for more information on how we can help you prioritize workplace mental health & well-being.

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