Talking mental health at Packaging Innovations 2024

Easyfairs conversation

Renan Joel, Divisional Director – UK & Global Packaging Portfolio at Easyfairs, speaks to us at Packaging Innovations 2024 about how working with The Printing Charity helps support mental wellbeing in the sector.

For us, collaborating with The Printing Charity was a clear choice, and we were delighted to welcome them to Packaging Innovations. Like many other manufacturing sectors, the packaging industry hasn’t always treated workplace mental health as a top priority, but that’s changing and we’re all the better for it. It’s through the work of organisations like The Printing Charity that we have the power to effect change.  

We’re great believers in the power of collective action. We want to amplify awareness of The Printing Charity, and the fantastic resources it provides to support mental health in the printing and packaging industries.  

Creating happy, supported teams

We believe that although there’s great progress being made in securing workforce wellbeing, there’s also a lot further to go. Supporting mental health isn’t a short-term strategy or a ‘magic bullet’, it has to be ingrained in the DNA of the business.  

For example, we believe that a happy and supported team is the foundation of success. We build a culture of transparency at Easyfairs, where our team can be open and honest about their mental health needs, and in turn we can offer the right support.

The transformative power of starting a conversation

The shift towards remote and hybrid working has encouraged many people to re-examine what ‘good’ mental health looks like, and it’s been a good opportunity to start important conversations around topics such as loneliness and work/life balance. Mental health is finally being treated with the same seriousness as physical health. It’s never been more vital, particularly while the cost-of-living crisis is putting further pressure on mental wellbeing for many.  

One of the biggest barriers to progress is that many people are still embarrassed to talk about mental health. Over the last few years, we have seen people becoming much more comfortable with discussing matters of mental health, and it’s giving the packaging industry fantastic clues as to how we build a stronger future for the packaging industry, with a nurtured and well-supported workforce. 

High hopes for continued mental wellbeing support in packaging

Studies show that in any given week, approximately 46 million adults in the UK will experience symptoms of common mental health problems, which really underlines how important organisations like The Printing Charity are.  

In the future, we would like to see more print industry businesses building dedicated mental health programmes into their operations. Ultimately, we envision a future where seeking help for mental health challenges is met with understanding and compassion, leading to healthier and more productive workplaces. 

A final word…

At Easyfairs, we commend The Printing Charity for its dedication to supporting mental health in the packaging industry and encourage everyone to continue starting important conversations around this important topic.

Together, we can create positive change and foster a more inclusive and supportive industry environment. 

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