Ombudsman addresses mental health

The Australian Small Business and Family Enterprise Ombudsman Kate Carnell has urged small business owners to take a moment to consider their wellbeing ahead of World Mental Health Day 2019 on Thursday, 10 October.

“This year’s World Mental Health Day focus is on suicide prevention, with someone in the world sadly taking their own life every 40 seconds,” Ms Carnell said.

“Organisers have asked everyone to take 40 seconds of action to raise awareness about mental health.

“Mental health is a serious issue for Australia’s small business community, with a new MYOB report revealing 56 per cent of small business owners admit that running their business has directly brought on feelings of anxiety or depression.

“Forty-eight per cent of those small business owners reported their anxiety was largely caused by financial and cash flow concerns.

“Many small business owners may not be aware that the very worries that are keeping them up at night – such as cash flow, customer demands or paying suppliers – can actually cause high levels of psychological distress and have serious impacts on their mental and physical health.

“It makes good business sense to invest in a mentally healthy workplace. Research by Pricewaterhouse Coopers has shown that every dollar spent on creating a mentally healthy workplace results on a positive return on investment of $2.30.”

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