Home Knowsley Council Council achieves prestigious Workplace Wellbeing Charter

Council achieves prestigious Workplace Wellbeing Charter

by Laura Johnston

Knowsley Council has once again achieved the prestigious Workplace Wellbeing Charter, a national award which confirms the council’s commitment to the health and wellbeing of its workforce.

The council originally achieved Charter status back in 2015, but this latest assessment has resulted in an increase in ‘Excellent’ judgements. The three-stage assessment, carried out by health@work (a registered independent charity) commenced on 20 September 2017 and included a comprehensive review of evidence, interviews with over 100 members of staff at all levels and service areas across the council, together with a tour of the working environment at both the Huyton Municipal Building and Stretton Way.

The Workplace Wellbeing Charter, endorsed by Public Health England, provides a set of nationally recognised standards for an organisation to measure their performance in eight key areas, being judged as either Commitment, Achievement or Excellent.

Following the assessment, the council was judged to be Excellent in four areas – Leadership, Absence Management, Health and Safety and Smoking – and secured an Achievement rating for Mental Health, Physical Activity, Healthy Eating and Alcohol and Substance Misuse.

In order to achieve this accolade, the council has introduced a number of initiatives aimed at promoting the health and wellbeing of its staff.  This includes the introduction of workplace Mental Health Champions (a first point of contact for staff wishing to discuss issues that could be impacting on their mental health), a clear no-smoking policy in operation and stop smoking support available to staff through the Knowsley Stop Smoking service.  Physical activity is encouraged through a cycle to work scheme and a range of football tournaments, swimming sessions and bushcraft trials available to staff.  The Venue is on-site, providing a great choice of healthy and freshly cooked meal choices throughout the day, along with support to those members of staff who wish to lose weight through a local slimming club.

Cllr Shelley Powell, Cabinet Member for Public Health, Wellbeing and Customer Services, said “I’m delighted that we have secured this national award, recognising the support we offer to our staff to improve their health and wellbeing.  We know that having a healthy workforce can reduce sickness absence, result in lower staff turnover as well as boosting productivity.  A healthy workforce also ensures we can continue to provide valuable services to our residents.  Many of our staff are local residents too, so the promotion of health and wellbeing messages and leading healthier lifestyles is also being extended to other family members too. Supporting our staff is a key priority for the council and by achieving the prestigious Workplace Wellbeing Charter will help us to protect and improve the health of those who work with us.”

The council’s Workplace Wellbeing Charter is due for re-accreditation in September 2019.