12th October 2018

Banks and law firms commit to new working practices for better mental health

Barclays, Lloyds Banking Group and NatWest, together with eight of the UK’s top law firms have joined together in an unprecedented alliance to change avoidable working practices that can cause mental health and wellbeing issues for employees.

The Mindful Business Charter, developed by Barclays alongside law firms Pinsent Masons and Addleshaw Goddard, is the first time banks and their legal services providers have come together to reach a shared agenda for supporting mental health and wellbeing.

Philip Aiken, Managing Director at Barclays, said: "Barclays takes the health and wellbeing of its employees very seriously and that extends to our external advisors who we view to be an extension of our legal function. The take-up of the Charter from so many of our banking and legal counterparts shows the power of collaboration to foster change. I believe it shouldn't stop there. We hope that in time these principles will be applied in all organisations across all sectors."

The Charter has the support of mental health charity Mind, the Law Society, LawCare and the Solicitors Regulatory Authority. Emma Mamo, Head of Workplace Wellbeing at Mind, said: “We welcome the launch of the Mindful Business Charter which sets out key principles to help employers tackle avoidable causes of stress and poor mental health at work. It’s positive to see so many employers already on board.

“Experiencing poor mental health at work is really common regardless of the kind of role you do, but if you work in the legal sector, there are particular factors that could put you at greater risk of developing a mental health problem. Things like long working hours, excessive workload and challenging relationships with colleagues and clients come up time and time again as sources of stress that could be reduced.”