As public awareness on mental health in the workplace has increased in recent years, the humanitarian sector—along with the CHS Alliance, the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees, the Antares Foundation, and others—has been stressing the need for aid organizations to ensure that their duty of care responsibilities encompass the health, safety, security, and well-being of staff.¹

This article aims to contribute to existing conversations on how actors in the mine action (MA) sector can work together to promote mental health in the workplace as well as prevent and mitigate adverse mental health outcomes. The article is also a call to action for MA management and leadership teams to invest in staffs’ mental well-being. Through interviews with key stakeholders² and desk-based review of existing literature, this article’s focus is two-fold. First, it provides an overview of stressors on the mental health of different profiles of humanitarian workers. Second, it conceptualizes poor mental health outcomes as an organizational risk factor.

Based on an understanding that mental health risk management cannot be based on a one-size-fits-all approach, systematically integrating mental health in risk management frameworks is important and is exemplified by the good practices employed by other sectors. Moreover, the conceptualization and treatment of adverse mental health outcomes requires the application of an intersectional lens to be culturally appropriate and adaptable to the varied sources of stress, risks, needs, and priorities of a diverse workforce. The interplay between people management, organizational culture, and mental health is critical for a holistic understanding of mental health in the workplace.³ This article highlights these three dimensions, specifically focusing on the impact of people management and organizational factors on mental health outcomes.



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