Employers are obliged under the Irish Safety, Health and Welfare at Work Act 2005 to ensure safe places of work for all employees, which covers mental as well as physical health and safety.
Improve employee wellbeing
The following initiatives provide resources and can help you structure activities to improve employee wellbeing:
- Work Positive is a free, psychosocial, risk management process, that helps organisations identify ways to improve employee wellbeing. Both State and stakeholder supported, it sets out four simple steps that you can take as an employer, is free-of-charge and doesn’t require members to download any software. It assists employers comply with health and safety legislation at a national and European level.
- IBEC’s keepwell mark provides a clear path outlining and guiding companies on how to improve workplace health and safety while maintaining a sense of wellbeing. The programme includes a personalised report with recommendations for your corporate wellbeing strategy and a certificate of accreditation valid two years.
- See Change Workplace pledge can facilitate improved wellbeing in the workplace. By pledging to become a See Change workplace your firm or organisation is making a commitment to completing the six steps of the See Change workplace programme. See also their Workplace Resources and Support Services.
- Employee Assistance Programmes offer access for your employees and their family members to mental wellbeing support and other services. Avail of an exclusive EAP offer and discount for Law Society members.
Employment law: Tackling Work Related Stress - From a preventative perspective, employers have a legal responsibility to provide a safe place of work and should promote positive mental health to avoid stress related illness. Read this January 2020 article from Ronan Daly Jermyn to learn more about what an Employer can do to prevent stress from becoming a problem and what they should do if an employee complains about being stressed at work.
Return to Work Safely Protocol, May 2020 - This document is a summary of the return to work safety protocol published by the HSA, the HSE, the Department of Health and the Department of Business, Enterprise and Innovation. Of particular importance is Section 7C of the protocol which addresses employer responsibilities with regards employees wellbeing and mental health. It describes the steps that employers and employees should take before a workplace reopens to make sure they can return to work safely. It also covers how businesses should operate after they reopen to reduce the spread of COVID-19 in the workplace.
Mental Wellbeing Research
The International Bar Association (IBA) has carried out research into various areas affecting the legal profession.
- Law Society of Ireland research into indicative levels of stress and wellbeing in the profession and the role of the mental-health supports being offered by the Society to its members, 2018/2019
- Balance at the Bar - Members’ Survey report, 2019
- Mental Health Matters: Managing Wellbeing in Irish Workplaces - DLA Piper report
England and Wales
- The Junior Lawyers' Division’s resilience and wellbeing survey report, 2019
- Report into the status of mental health stigma and discrimination in the Scottish legal profession, June 2020.
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The Law Society is delighted to have negotiated an exclusive Employee Assistance Programme (EAP) offer for Members with Laya Healthcare, an independent and confidential EAP provider.
24/7 Mental Wellbeing Support Programme
The service offers unlimited access for your employees and their family to a freephone EAP service 24/7, 365 days a year. The programme can also be accessed by employees via the EAP portal, app, or live chat. Services include:
- 24/7 Freephone Mental wellbeing support
- Up to 6 Sessions of face-to-face counselling
- Video/telephone counselling option
- Support across finance, legal, mediation, parenting coaching, life coaching and more.
For more information, download the Laya Healthcare EAP brochure.
What is an EAP?
An EAP provides a first-line response to providing prevention, triage and short-term problem resolution services to an organisation’s team and select family members. It is also available to managers to support them through any personal issues they might have while also helping them with any unique issues they may face in their role. It can be used by an employee, a spouse/partner and any dependent over the age of 16 who is living in the same household.
Why ensure an EAP is in place
- Staff retention
- Proven to improve employee efficiencies
- Support employee mental wellbeing
- Affordable for employers to implement
- Helps businesses save money
- Encourages a positive work environment
What’s the cost for Law Society members?
- Firms up to 30 employees: €400 (fixed cost per year)
- Each subsequent employee: €7.50 per employee per year
What is the EAP rate reduction for members?
The regular minimum annual fee from Laya per firm would be €750 (fixed cost per year) and €14.71 per employee. The new offer of €400 per year and €7.50 per employee thereafter is a 47% reduction in price, with 30 employees costing the organisation just €1.11 per employee per month.
How does payment work?
Laya deals directly with members of the Law Society, including invoicing. The service is completely independent of the Law Society.
Please fill out the form below to receive a proposal from Laya for your firm. A member of the Laya team will be in touch shortly to answer any queries you have around the service.