MENTAL wellbeing in the workplace will be tackled as part of an initiative being launched in Darlington.

Employers in the town have joined the Darlington Cares organisation in a bid to develop a project aimed at supporting those with mental ill health.

Recent estimates suggest the cost to the work place of mental ill health is around £30 billion in lost productivity, sickness absence and staff turnover.

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The proposed scheme will enable employers to address the issue by working with organisations including Darlington Mind, Darlington Partnership and Darlington Borough Council.

Alasdair MacConachie, chair of Darlington Partnership and vice-chair of Darlington Cares said: “Each year, Darlington Partnership selects priorities and mental health and wellbeing in the workplace has been identified as a key focus.

“We hope that by working with local employers to develop a scheme that will help them to support their employees, we will be able to better support individuals who may experience mental health problems and contribute to the bottom line for local businesses through increased productivity and decreased sickness absence.”

An introductory event setting out an overview of the scheme will take place at Teesside University’s Darlington campus on Haughton Road on Wednesday, September 10 from 8am until 9.30am.

Businesses interested in attending should contact Katie Blundell on 01642 738970 or