William hails Mental Health at Work Commitment adopted by emergency services

·1-min read
The Duke of Cambridge speaks at the Royal Foundation’s Emergency Services Mental Health Symposium in London (Andrew Matthews/PA) (PA Wire)
The Duke of Cambridge speaks at the Royal Foundation’s Emergency Services Mental Health Symposium in London (Andrew Matthews/PA) (PA Wire)

The Duke of Cambridge has hailed an “unprecedented agreement” signed by the emergency services to adopt a package of mental health support for their workers.

William said the development will send a “powerful message to all emergency responders“ that the issue of mental health will remain a “firm priority”.

Speaking during the Royal Foundation’s Emergency Services Mental Health Symposium in London, the duke gave a personal account of the mental health issues he faced when flying helicopters for RAF Search and Rescue and later the East Anglian Air Ambulance

He described how he would return to Kate and their children “… with the stresses and strains of the day weighing on my mind, and wanting to avoid burdening my family with what I had seen”.

The Duke of Cambridge and Metropolitan Police Commissioner Dame Cressida Dick at the symposium (Andrew Matthews/PA) (PA Wire)
The Duke of Cambridge and Metropolitan Police Commissioner Dame Cressida Dick at the symposium (Andrew Matthews/PA) (PA Wire)

Health Secretary Sajid Javid and Metropolitan Police Commissioner Dame Cressida Dick joined emergency services leaders, frontline workers, policymakers and academics at the event to hear William announce that senior leaders, representing national bodies of the emergency services community, have signed the Mental Health at Work Commitment.

The duke added: “This is an unprecedented agreement, and it sends a powerful message to all emergency responders that mental health is, and will remain, a firm priority for the UK’s emergency services.

The Duke of Cambridge flew helicopters with the East Anglian Air Ambulance (Heathcliff O’Malley/The Daily Telegraph/PA) (PA Archive)
The Duke of Cambridge flew helicopters with the East Anglian Air Ambulance (Heathcliff O’Malley/The Daily Telegraph/PA) (PA Archive)

“It means that, for the first time, a uniform set of standards for supporting the mental health of emergency responders will be adopted and integrated into their workplaces.

“New resources and tools will be rolled out across the services. And the independent oversight bodies will be able to assess organisations’ work in this area against consistent criteria, which will help change culture and hold leadership to account.”

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