COSLA has joined forces with Trade Union colleagues to launch a mental health awareness video.
The ‘Don’t Stay on Mute’ clip aims to reassure people who are suffering from anxiety or uncertainty due to the COVID-19 pandemic that they are not alone and that a variety of support is available.
It is hoped the message will resonate with the thousands of workers across Scotland still working remotely or in isolation as the country remains in Phase 3 of the route map out of the pandemic – with ‘you’re on mute!’ a frequent cry during online meetings.
COSLA’s President, Councillor Alison Evison, and Resources Spokesperson, Councillor Gail Macgregor, are joined in the clip by union colleagues Johanna Baxter, Head of Local Government Scotland, UNISON; Steven McNab, Inverclyde Council, Society of Personnel & Development Scotland (SPDS); Sharon McKenzie, Fife Council, Wellbeing Lead for Society of Personnel & Development Scotland (SPDS), and Louise Wilson, Assistant Secretary, EIS.
Councillor Evison said: “The COVID-19 pandemic has brought a number of challenges for us all, and the impact on our mental health cannot be underestimated.
“Now more than ever, we need to keep in touch with our family, friends and colleagues – as the video suggests, Don’t Stay on Mute.
“I hope the video encourages those who are struggling with anxieties or isolation to seek out support.”
Councillor Macgregor said: “With so many people across the country still working from home or away from their colleagues six months into lockdown, it is important that we reach out and make sure that those who need a bit of support know where to find it.
“We all appreciate that home working, or as individuals away from our usual teams, is essential for keeping safe during the pandemic, but it also brings a number of challenges – such as trying to maintain a work / life balance and feelings of loneliness and isolation.
“You are not alone - we are here and we are all in it together – your union and workforce are there for you.”