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Suffolk business leaders explore ways to make their employees healthier

PUBLISHED: 13:35 31 January 2019

Young individuals are looking to exercise to improve their wellness PICTURE: Getty Images

Young individuals are looking to exercise to improve their wellness PICTURE: Getty Images

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A partnership to boost productivity by improving workers' health and wellbeing is being stepped up in Suffolk, with a series of new workshops and a virtual workplace health board.

Suffolk Chamber of Commerce teamed up with Suffolk County Council’s public health team last year to raise awareness on a range of issues affecting workplace health, and the many resources available to which businesses can signpost their staff.

Research conducted after the campaign showed that many of the businesses were either implementing or thinking of implementing many of their recommendations for boosting employees’ wellbeing.

A recent discussion event, chaired by Dr Peter Funnell at Stoke-by-Nayland Hotel, Golf & Spa, brought together businesses of all shapes and sizes to discuss their priorities in this area.

The participants mapped out some key practical issues that businesses were keen to more widely implement, including healthy eating and the benefits of making time for a lunch break, happiness in the workplace, removing barriers to encourage more physical activity and promoting better understanding and support for mental health – especially among men, but generally supporting conversations to tackle the stigma.

According to John Dugmore, chief executive of Suffolk Chamber of Commerce: “Underlying all of these ideas was the concept of resilience. How do we work together to create more resilient employees, managers and organisations? We are jointly hosting a number of workshops with county colleagues that should help shape exactly what success looks like in this context.”

Cllr James Reeder, Suffolk County Council’s cabinet member for health, added: “Following an incredibly productive launch event for the Improving Workplace Health project, I’m looking forward to starting a conversation with Suffolk businesses about what matters most to them when it comes to workplace health and how we can work together to make a positive difference.”

The workshops will be held at the Suffolk Chamber of Commerce offices at Felaw Maltings on Wednesdays March 6, May 15, July 17, and September 18. For more information and to book, please contact Emma Alderton on emma@suffolkchmaber.co.uk

Suffolk Chamber and Suffolk County Council are also setting up a ‘virtual’ Suffolk workplace health board, comprising of business and other sector representatives to share good practice and thoughts on improving the health and wellbeing of Suffolk employees. Any companies interested in participating should contact Paul Simon at Suffolk Chamber: paul@suffolkchamber.co.uk

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