Mental Health Support
1 in 5 U.S. adults experience mental illness each year.
1 in 20 U.S. adults experience serious mental illness each year.
Suicide is the 2nd leading cause of death among people aged 10-34.
Stats provided by NAMI. Learn more under Additional Resources below.
University Police: Assistance with critical situations on campus call 920.424.1212; Emergency Guidebook
Employee Assistance Program: All aspects of wellness assistance – free for household members. Dial 833-539-7285 (TTY: 877-334-0489)
SilverCloud: Online, self-guided support for mild to moderate symptoms (access ending 6/30/22)
Family & Medical Leave or Leave of Absence Eligibility and Processes: job/benefit protection for paid/unpaid time off; Visit the Benefits & Insurance webpage
Well Wisconsin: Meet with a wellness health coach; call WebMD HelpLine 800-821-6591 (for those enrolled [and spouses] in State Group Health)
National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI): Locate a local support group for yourself and families of individuals with mental illness
Calling 911 is Courageous
Inform operator it is a psychiatric emergency and ask for police officers trained in crisis intervention
Connect to support, and resources
“Your everyday words and everyday actions either contribute to or eliminate the stigma that’s associated with issues like mental health, suicide, and substance abuse.” – Mettie Spiess
Take the time to educate yourself and encourage others to do the same. Help break the stigma.
Simple Strategies to Eliminate Stigma in the Workplace (5.38 min video)
- Learn ways to eliminate stigma around mental health and suicide through how you communicate and show support for what others may be living with on a daily basis.
Provided by Active Minds, this pledge is an important step towards opening the conversations around mental health and supporting each other.
“No one should have to struggle alone and your commitment to saying “I’m here for you” may just let someone know that they aren’t alone in their journey to find the support they need. Those simple words could just start a life-saving conversation.” – Alison Malmon, Founder & Executive Director, Active Minds
Warning Signs and Symptoms of Mental Health Issues
supported by NAMI and A World Without Suicide
Warning Signs and Symptoms (1.48 min video)
- “Telling the difference between what expected behaviors are and what might be the signs of a mental illness isn’t always easy. There’s no easy test that can let someone know if there is mental illness or if actions and thoughts might be typical behaviors of a person or the result of a physical illness. Each illness has its own set of symptoms but (there are) some common signs of a mental health condition” — NAMI
Managing Loneliness in Trying Times
supported by Virgin Pulse
We all need reminders on how to manage loneliness, particularly in times of great loss or difficult life changing moments.
“In this video you will learn:
- Practical, actionable techniques to help cope with feeling lonely during these difficult times
- How to navigate difficult feelings
- The shifting of challenging emotions
- How managing social anxiety can help improve your health and happiness”
supported by DBSA
“Anxiety is your mind and body’s natural response to events that are threatening. It’s important to keep in mind that experiencing anxiety is normal for everyone. However, when anxiety becomes severe, lasts for several weeks, and includes symptoms that keep you from doing things you usually would, it may be worth discussing with your health care professional. Anxiety symptoms are real—they are not just in your head. They can be treated, and they are nothing to be ashamed of.” – DBSA
Understanding Your Mood
supported by DBSA
“Mood disorders are medical conditions that affect the brain. Their exact cause is not known, but we do know that an imbalance in brain chemicals plays a role. These conditions also have a genetic component, meaning they can run in families. They’re not your fault, and they’re nothing to be ashamed of. Having a mood disorder does not mean you can’t lead a fulfilling life.” – DBSA
How to Approach and Support a Colleague Struggling with Mental Health Issues
Your approach matters.
We all need support. Here are a few training resources to help you support a colleague that may be struggling with mental health concerns. Remember, it is not your focus to provide counseling or ‘fix’ their issues, it’s about showing support and respecting their struggle.
Learn How to Approach Colleagues that Appear to be Struggling
Below are video trainings to help you gain insight on how to work with and support colleagues with mental health concerns. Take the time do a little on-demand training for yourselves and encourage others to go through the information as well.
How to Talk About Mental Health Without Offending Everyone (16.50 min TEDx Talk)
- Learn a perspective on how to make room for someone else’s story and provide an open environment for discussion.
- This video is provided by Dan Berstein, Mediator
I’m not Sick, I Don’t Need Help! (18.02 min TEDx Talk)
- Learn the LEAP method for communicating with a colleague, friends, and family members. This video provides a good example of how typical approaches may be perceived by the individual struggling with a mental health illness or having a mental health crisis.
- This video is provided by Dr. Xavier Amador, Clinical Psychologist
Responding to an Employee in Crisis- Interactive Exercise (18.11 min role play)
- How you interact with an employee in crisis makes all the difference. Learn through role play and practice. This training utilizes the How to Support Employees handout linked below.
- How to Support Employees Handout – this handout goes along with the Responding to an Employee in Crisis video training
Supporting Employees After a Mental Health Leave of Absence (11.19 min video)
- “Normalizing returning to work after treatment for mental health is an important part of breaking stigma and supporting your employees. Four key strategies are outlined in this video for a successful return to work experience for your entire team. How to handle team member reactions and questions regarding the employee’s return is also covered in this module.” – Mettie Spiess
Win Win Team Communication (5.47 min video)
- How you write or verbally communicate and respond to other written and verbal communications matters. Learn strategies for communicating to assist with improved understanding and respect.
Video trainings are provided from Mettie Spiess, Founder & CEO of A World Without Suicide, Certified Psychological Health & Safety Advisor.
Supporting Employees with Conditions We Can’t See
Provided by Virgin Pulse
This is a free on-demand educational video that will provide hands-on examples for how to work with employees that have conditions that are not obvious to the naked eye, such as mental illness. At the link there is an opportunity to download the slides for future referencing. NOTE: there is a pre-webinar session prior to the actual presentation. Feel free to fast forward past that portion.
Be Prepared and Understand How to Navigate a Mental Health Crisis
supported by NAMI
If you notice a colleague in a mental health crisis, do not hesitate to reach out to University Police (920.424.1212) and/or Human Resources (920.424.1166) for help.
- This guide outlines warnings signs, strategies for de-escalating, what can contribute to a crisis, and more
Portable Treatment Record – download for use to begin creating your own personal crisis plan
Suicide Prevention Card – carry with you to remind you who to contact when you are having suicidal thoughts
Quick Flyers to Share with Your Team
supported by NAMI
- Warning Signs of Mental Illness
- Warning Signs of Suicide (Spanish Version)
- The Ripple Effect of Mental Illness
supported by NAMI and DBSA
- Living with a Mental Health Condition
- Understanding the Different Mental Health Conditions
- Common Conditions with Mental Illness
- Understanding Suicidal Thoughts
- Suicide Prevention Card – carry with you to remind you who to contact when you are having suicidal thoughts
- Portable Treatment Record – download for use to begin creating your personal crisis plan
- Finding Peace of Mind: Treatment Strategies for Depression
Mental Health Statistics Resources