Zurich Bermuda achieves mindful employer gold standard
Zurich Bermuda has earned a gold designation under the Bermuda Mental Health Foundation’s Mindful Employer Certificate programme. The Foundation found that Zurich’s existing workplace policies in the areas of human resources, employee benefits -including wellness and mental health coverage, flexible work arrangements, and policy manuals are exemplary.
The Mindful Employer Certification programme was launched last year. It seeks to challenge, highlight and cultivate company cultures that put mental health as a workplace priority. The certification ensures that employers are in compliance with existing legislation, while challenging them to develop, implement or enhance sound policies and practices around mental health.
The MEC programme begins with a baseline assessment of a company’s existing policies and practices and measures them against a set of key standards aimed at fostering a mentally healthy and stigma-free workplace.
Annie Richardson, Foundation director and HR professional, said: “Employers who value and prioritise mental health will see a positive impact on retention, engagement, wellness and healthcare costs. More importantly, by completing the programme, companies like Zurich not only provide a supportive work environment but are also in a powerful position to help change attitudes around what can often be a taboo topic.”
Ms Richardson and Cathy Sousa, a mental health professional and a fellow Foundation director, are assessors for the programme.
James Macdonald, Foundation chairman, said: “The concept for the programme has been a work in progress for the Foundation and we are pleased with the level of interest that it has attracted thus far. Zurich Bermuda is the first company to receive a MEC certification and we commend this wonderful organisation on achieving our highest designation, the ’Gold Standard’. We look forward to working with all of Bermuda’s employers to ensure they have or create a mentally friendly work environment.”
In a joint statement, Philip Thorne, chief executive officer of Zurich Investment Service Ltd, and Mike Deevy, CEO of Zurich Insurance Company Ltd, Bermuda branch, said: “For Zurich globally, the wellbeing (including mental health) of our employees and the communities we operate in is very important to us, and so we are extremely proud to have achieved the gold standard MEC.
“While mental wellbeing is always important, in 2020 we have seen this elevated as a result of Covid-19. Now more than ever, we continue to ensure that our policies and practices are robust enough to support our employees during such a challenging time.”
To learn more about the programme or the Bermuda Mental Health Foundation, visit http://www.bmhf.bm. Any companies interested in earning Mindful Employer designation, should visit http://bmhf.bm/mec/ or call the Foundation at 703-0003