News: Join the Heard: CIPR and PRCA relaunch joint mental health collaboration

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THE Chartered Institute of Public Relations (CIPR) and the Public Relations and Communications Association (PRCA) have launched a joint mental health survey, in partnership with Opinium, as part of a collaboration designed to address mental health challenges in public relations.   

The professional bodies are calling on all PR and communications professionals to complete the survey to help benchmark the industry’s progress on mental health. Last year’s study revealed 90 per cent of PR professionals reported poor mental health at some point in the previous twelve months.   

The organizations have also announced the relaunch of their Heard Mentality campaign, which urges leaders to hear the concerns of colleagues and encourages team leaders to hold constructive talks with their teams or peers on mental health. Last year more than 200 teams took part in the industry-wide conversation.   

This year, agency, in-house and independent practitioners are invited to host conversations during the week commencing 10 October 2022. The CIPR and PRCA will issue guidance and conversation starter packs to those hosting discussions.  

CIPR chief executive Alastair McCapra said, “I’m very pleased that we are able to share this year’s survey and announce the re-launch of the Heard Mentality campaign. This is the second year of our working together and I hope that by encouraging discussions amongst colleagues and peers we can see the dial shift and greater proactive approaches taken by business leaders to address the wellbeing concerns of their teams. 

For two years we have talked about the success and growth of the PR industry but, as previous research has indicated, this hasn’t been matched with any improvements to our collective wellbeing. Seismic events dominating the news agenda together with the increased workload due to the industry’s struggle to recruit is a dangerous recipe and means those in our industry must work harder than ever before. Creating a culture of support is a first step and one I hope the industry grasps with both hands and takes forward.”  

PRCA director general Francis Ingham said, “Last year’s cross-industry approach to research and campaigns on mental health was an important step forward for our profession. Progress has been made. But the simple truth is far too many of our colleagues work in organizations and cultures that fail to prioritize employee wellbeing. Our previous research has highlighted the severity of this issue – we now need leaders to act and implement policies and procedures that protect mental health.  

“Today, we have two simple asks. Complete our survey to help us benchmark the industry’s progress on this vital issue. And register to take part in our Heard Mentality campaign to initiate internal conversations on mental health and wellbeing. Together, we can defeat the stigma attached to mental health and create healthy working environments for all our people.”