The 5 Star team
UK - Flight case manufacturers, 5 Star Cases believes in normalising discussions about mental health at work and breaking down barriers when it comes to the stigma of mental illness.
According to 5 Star’s accounts & HR manager Kirsty Locks, authentic human connections need to start with treating every member of the team as an individual and ensuring everyone feels that they belong. “This is what creates true diversity and inclusion, and that’s why we’ve been so passionate about advocating this within our team,” says Kirsty. “For everyone to feel they belong, this also means being vulnerable at times, which is why we have been integrating mental health and wellbeing services within our workplace to keep employees happy and in a healthy state of mind.”
The company has taken some important steps to ensure the mental wellbeing of its workforce is being looked after. “We’ve always known how important our staff’s mental wellbeing is, but during the pandemic we realised just how vital it is, so we did something more about it. We signed up for The Healthy Workplace, funded by Cambridgeshire County Council and Peterborough City Council and delivered by Everyone Health.
“The Healthy Workplace service supports workplaces across Cambridgeshire and Peterborough to improve the health and wellbeing of their employees. 5 Star is also running an EAP (Employee Assistance Programme) in partnership with Peninsula and Health Assured, which includes mental and wellbeing support for all employees and their families, including phone and face to face appointments,” Kirsty explains.
Dan, a Paint Sprayer at 5 Star, has been working at the company for the past seven years and has been suffering with mental health problems in recent years. By sharing his story with other members of staff and being open about his condition, Dan’s story not only resonated with many other people and unleashed a flood of support, but it also signalled to everyone that it was OK not to be OK.
“5 Star has been really understanding and supportive with my problems, offering help and advice any time I need it. I’ve never worked at a place that is this caring to its employees. The management and the floor staff have always been there for me and offered a non-judgemental space, empathy and reassurance which made coping with life’s challenges just that little bit easier for me,” shares Dan.
“The Covid-19 pandemic has really shown us how important it is to see our team as individuals with their individual talents, needs and challenges,” Kirsty concludes. “Attracting new talent is much more about listening to them and understanding who they truly are than just looking at their qualifications and experience. Open and friendly discussion about wellbeing and mental health in the workplace is essential to building a strong team of individuals. We want our employees to be the best version of themselves.”

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