You will recall that we sent FICSA Communication 37/19 and hosted an information session (FICSA Communication 83/20) to update you on the status of the UN System-wide Strategy on Mental Health and Wellbeing (MH Strategy). Since then, the emergence of COVID-19 across the world has dramatically impacted us in many ways. The virus affects not only physical health, there are also multiple risks to mental health and wellbeing: anxiety related to the unknown, to the risks, working remotely and being socially isolated, as well as fear for family, friends and self. Often UN staff also work away from their usual social supports in challenging environments. These developments have shifted the focus of work of the MH Strategy Implementation Board from longterm (over five years) to a focus on urgent action to increase the level of support provided and to increase efforts to look after the health and wellbeing of staff. Although the overall MH Strategy remains the same, how activities are prioritised will change in order to ensure the provision of resources that can be adapted by UN organisations to address current and emerging mental health and wellbeing issues arising due to the COVID-19 outbreak and beyond. The focus is on actions that both individual staff members and organisations can take.
Ask the FICSA Expert: Information and Q&A session on the UN System Mental Health and Wellbeing Strategy (slides) Video: