Stress Management, Promoting Wellbeing & Work-Life Balance

Standard

With Ollie Welsby, Trainer, Brightcore Consultancy
Wednesday 5th October 2022, 11.30am – 12.30pm
Online via Teams

Please join this Wellness Working Group session to gain insight from Ollie as to how to manage our own stress as well as looking at managing our wellbeing in the short and long term.

Ollie will help us understand the biology of stress and how we can identify this in ourselves and others. He will also provide us with coping strategies and how to maintain a work life balance.

To book, please email mpsstaff-wwg@parliament.uk

Wellbeing – looking after yourself and others

Standard

Caseworker Discussion Forum hosted by the Commons Library

The Library, in conjunction with the Members’ Services Team, is pleased to invite you to the Casework Discussion Forum which will take place virtually each month.

The next session is taking place on Thursday 18 August, 9:30-10:30am and will be on the topic of Wellbeing – looking after yourself and others. It will be chaired by Wendy Wilson from the Library.

The Forum will be complemented by a dedicated Teams chat which will allow you to share ideas and best practice, as well as support being on hand from the Library should specialist knowledge be required.

(Please note, you do not have to be a Caseworker to attend these sessions, they are open to any Members’ staff who handle casework.) 

If you have any questions, please contact MST@parliament.uk

Professor Chris Williams Helping you – and your constituents Live Life to the Full

Standard

Thursday 26th May – 10am – 11am

Living life to the Full (LLTTF) is one of the UK’s most popular wellbeing resources, and is widely recommended in health, social care and charity settings. A free access site at www.llttf.com provides online wellbeing skills, and courses to help those living with stress and low mood,  long-term physical health problems including long-covid, new parents and others. It helps people to understand their feelings, and learn key life skills based on the popular and evidence-based cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT) approach.

Award-winning author Professor Chris Williams, Emeritus Professor of Psychiatry at the University of Glasgow, and twice past-President of BABCP – the lead body for CBT in the UK,  will give an overview of the resources, and how they can be used to support your constituents, your families, friends and ourselves.  Dr Williams is also Director of Five Areas Ltd which has developed a range of widely recommended wellbeing resources. He is an award-winning author and his books, classes and websites are widely used in the UK, Ireland, and North America. The free-access www.llttf.com life skills course is the most recommended CBT product in NHS England IAPT services and mental health trusts (Bennion et al, 2017 BMJ Open). His work has been translated into Somali, French, Chinese, Italian, Urdu, Ukrainian and Romanian, as well as six other languages.  Contact details for Professor Williams are below.

To register for the meeting, please email mpsstaff-wwg@parliament.uk

Mental Health First Aid drop-in session for Members and Members’ staff

Standard

Do you know how to support your own mental health and that of your team? Have you seen an increase in the number of constituents and colleagues who are presenting with mental health concerns and would you know where to signpost them if you needed to?

Organised by Tracey Crouch MP and the Members’ Services Team, Mental Health First Aid (MHFA) England will be hosting a taster morning in Attlee Suite from 9am-1pm on 19 May 2022 to explore what you need to support yours and others’ mental health and wellbeing.

See here for full details: https://intranet.parliament.uk/business-news/news-current-issues/news/2022/may/mental-health-first-aid-drop-in-session-for-members-and-members-staff/

Important date of 28 April 2022, for non-recent cases of bullying and harassment 

Standard

It has been a year since Alison Stanley wrote her 18 month independent review of the Independent Complaints and Grievance Scheme (ICGS), and 28 of her 33 recommendations have now been implemented. This is in large part due to the hard work of the ICGS team. We have created the new ICGS Hub, we are recruiting more investigators, and we have made the complaints process more streamlined and accessible.  

An important recommendation implemented in April 2021 was the agreed time limit for non-recent cases of bullying and harassment. Up until 28 April 2022, there will be no time limit on lodging non-recent cases (this has applied since non-recent cases were eligible under the scheme in October 2019). This has ensured that long-standing complaints that had not previously been addressed, such as the case of John Bercow, could be investigated.  

However, as agreed in both Houses, from 28 April 2022, there will be a time limit of one year from when the bullying and harassment incident (or the latest of those incidents) happened. This is to ensure investigations are conducted in a timely manner, and that evidence can be collected efficiently. After the ICGS opened to non-recent complaints, colleagues did come forward to have their non-recent complaints addressed through the ICGS. Almost three years later, this has naturally tapered off. In the past six months, all complaints were about recent experiences. 

It is extremely important that, if you want to make a complaint concerning bullying and harassment that happened more than one year ago, you should phone the helpline before 28 April 2022.  

For anyone experiencing sexual misconduct, it can take a long time to come to process that behaviour, and so there will continue to be no time limit placed on complaints of sexual misconduct.  

These changes do not apply in respect of complaints about the behaviour of members of the House of Lords or their staff. These complaints are dealt with under the Lords Code of Conduct, which states that complaints must usually be made within six years of the conduct complained of. 

You can call the independent ICGS helpline anonymously and as many times as you need, to ask for advice and information. You can also make a formal complaint about behaviour that you have experienced. Your calls will be treated confidentially and empathetically. For more information please visit the ICGS hub. Former members of the parliamentary community can visit the UK Parliament website for further information.  

The helpline is there for all of us. Please use it. 

Jo Willows, 

ICGS Director 

Mindfulness Course for Members

Standard

New six-week online mindfulness course for Members starts next Wednesday 23 February, 8.30-9.30am.

Sessions will take place every Wednesday 8.30-9.30am for six weeks (from Wednesday 23 February to Wednesday 30 March).

The course will be delivered by Awaris, leading mindfulness training provider and sessions will take place online via Zoom.

To book your place email Lydia Smith on PHWS@parliament.uk

Time to Talk Day 2022

Standard

To mark Time to Talk day this year, we will be running a series of events from Thursday 3 February. Over five days we will hear from colleagues across Parliament, who will share their experience of living with a mental health problem.

Join our Time to Talk Day campaign and let’s start talking about mental health:

  • Thursday 3: Anxiety. Online live session, 10.30-11am
  • Friday 4: Burnout. Blog Post
  • Monday 7: Depression. Online live session, 10.30-11am and Blog Post.
  • Tuesday 8: Bulimia. Online live session,10.30-11am
  • Wednesday 9: Having conversations about mental health. Online live session, 10.30-11am.

To sign-up email PHWS@parliament.uk or visit the H&W Learning Hub.

If you are on the Estate tomorrow (Thursday 3 February 2022), come and visit our Wellbeing Stall in Portcullis House Atrium to find out more about the wellbeing services available

WWG – Talk from Hope Virgo on Eating Disorders

Standard

Thursday 20th January at 2pm

Hope Virgo is an Author, Founder of #DumpThe Scales Campaign and a multi award winning international leading advocate for people with eating disorders as well as being a recognised media spokesperson, having appeared on various platforms including BBC Newsnight, Victoria Derbyshire, Good Morning Britain, Sky News and BBC News.

For four years, Hope managed to keep her eating disorder hidden, keeping dark secrets from friends and family. But then, on 17th November 2007, Hope’s world changed forever. She was admitted to a mental health hospital. Her skin was yellowing, her heart was failing, she was barely recognizable. Forced to leave her family and friends, the hospital became her home. Over the next year, at her lowest ebb, Hope faced the biggest challenge of her life. She had to find the courage to beat her anorexia.

In today’s session you will hear a harrowing but inspiring story of recovery, get practical advice on how to manage your wellbeing and know how to talk to those around you who may be impacted by eating disorders.  

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/hopevirgo_/?hl=en

To register for this event, please email mpsstaff-wwg@parliament.uk

Working Mind Six Week Online Mindfulness Course – starts 20 January

Standard

As we approach the new year, many of us will be looking ahead at the next 12 months, setting new year’s resolutions, and vowing to make positive changes in our lives. This new year, why not resolve to be more mindful for 2022?

Mindfulness promotes resilience and wellbeing. It can help us to manage change and uncertainty, which will be particularly valuable as we navigate the unknowns of the new year.

We invite you to take part in the Working Mind six-week mindfulness course, open to members’ staff of either House. Sessions will take place every Thursday 12-1pm from 20 January to 24 February. Book your place via ACTor email PHWS@parliament.uk

The six-week course is an opportunity to experience the principles and practices of mindfulness, and explore how mindfulness can help you thrive inside and outside of the workplace. The course will be delivered by Awaris and will take place online via Zoom.

Not sure if mindfulness is for you? A Mindfulness Taster session will take place on Wednesday 12 January, 9.30-10am. This workshop will introduce you to mindfulness as a way of reclaiming your attention and developing greater focus, clarity and wellbeing. It is suitable both as a stand-alone session, and as a taster for those interested in signing up for one of our longer mindfulness courses. Book your place.

For further details about the mindfulness course, please email PHWS@parliament.uk

Laughter Workshop – Monday 17 January

Standard

Laugh away the January Blues with a laughter workshop, hosted by Lotte Mikkelsen.

You have probably heard the saying that “laughter is the best medicine” – but its more than an old wives tale – laughing can really benefit your health and wellbeing. By laughing we release natural feel-good chemicals into our body, which lower our stress levels and put us in a much more positive frame of mind.

Join us for a laughter workshop on Monday 17 January, 12-12.30pm. You are guaranteed to leave the session feeling reenergised and ready to take on Blue Monday with a smile!  Book your place on the H&W learning hub or email PHWS@parliament.uk

The session will be hosted by Lotte Mikklesen, leading laughter yoga expert. Lotte has worked with clients such as Google, Barclays and the NHS, and has also featured several times on ITV