A series of powerful films discussing the impact of mental health has been launched by Step Change in Safety as part of a new resource pack for the energy industry.
Five films have been created by the Aberdeen-based organisation and feature interviews with people working in or associated with the energy sector. They offer first-hand testimony about the way different real-life triggers have impacted the mental wellbeing of five individuals.
Accompanying the films is a guidance document containing information on how an individual can better manage their mental health. It also details the support that workers can offer colleagues who they suspect are struggling with their mental wellbeing.
Step Change in Safety has produced the films and guidance document to help reduce the stigma associated with mental health issues and offer an opportunity for people to learn from the experiences of others. Each film also acts as a reminder of the risks posed to the health and safety of colleagues due to one person going through a period of poor mental health.
The films explore the impact that bereavement, anxiety attacks, depression and obsessive compulsive disorder (OCD) can have on an individual’s mental health and the effect it can have on family, friends and colleagues. Each participant talks openly about their experiences, while discussing the ways in which they have sought help and support.
Stills from the five new mental health awareness films
A central theme running through all of the films is the need to encourage people to talk honestly with those around them about their feelings if they are suffering an episode of poor mental health.
Step Change in Safety executive director Steve Rae said: “Mental health and wellbeing has been brought into sharp focus in recent years and continues to be a priority area for the oil and gas industry. With this series of five films and supporting guidance document, we hope to offer an insight into some of the triggers that can impact an individual’s mental wellbeing. They also act as a reminder of how mental health can have a bearing on the health and safety of fellow workers.
“Historically, there has been a stigma associated with mental health, one which Step Change in Safety is committed to working with colleagues across the energy sector to end. These are powerful films that we hope the industry will use, empowering the workforce to have positive discussions about the subject.
“We will all have moments in our lives – caused by different triggers – when our mental health changes. Recognising that and seeking help when required is crucial. The most important thing that we can all do is talk, whether to family, friends, or colleagues, or anonymously to someone at an organisation that offers help and support.”
The series of five films can be viewed on the Step Change in Safety website at www.stepchangeinsafety.net/workgroups/mental-health/.