Health and Wellbeing for Staff (21739/19)

Request

Please can you send me any of West-Midlands Police initiatives for health and wellbeing for their staff members including any initiatives, policies/procedures, or support given to those suffering stress and mental health related problems?

Please include details of any external support purchased?

Response

Please find attached the Force’s wellbeing strategy, which covers all the initiatives we are working on. In addition, we have attached the TRiM (Trauma Risk Management) policy which demonstrates the way in which we support our workforce following an incident / traumatic event.

With regard to external support:

We use March on Stress to deliver our TRiM training and their expertise in setting up TRiM in WMP

We are engaging with PIPs charity to deliver our Suicide Prevention awareness training

Police Mutual are supporting our financial wellbeing programme and supporting in Mental Health Awareness Workshops

We are working with ‘Missy Red Boots’ to create our Back up Buddy app (to provide all WMP colleagues with 24/7 access to mental health support via their personal mobile phones)

SESA community is helping us deliver #resilientme – a self-development programme that is accessible to all and concentrates on workload, burnout and relationships etc

However, while the majority of the information is attached to this email, I am afraid that I am not required to release all of the information requested. Please find attached the redacted documents.

REASONS FOR DECISION

The redacted information is exempt by virtue of the following exemptions:

Section 38(1)(a) – Health and safety

Section 40(2) – Personal information

These exemptions and explanatory notes are shown here:

https://www.app.college.police.uk/app-content/information-management/freedom-of-information/#freedom-of-information-exemptions

In line with the above, I am required to complete a Prejudice Test/Public Interest Test (PIT) on disclosure. Please find my reasoning below.

Section 38 – Health and safety

Harm

Although officers are within a public facing role within the community and deal with incidents of varying degrees of risk, it is the responsibility of the force to take reasonable measures to protect the health, safety and wellbeing of its officers.

Considerations Favouring Disclosure

This information could go some way towards reassuring the public that West Midlands Police is adequately equipped to provide support and assistance with regard to the psychological wellbeing of WMP employees.

Considerations Favouring Non-Disclosure

To disclose the Force’s login details for the Employee Assistance Programme (EAP) could result in a high number of unauthorised logins which may in turn prevent WMP employees from accessing the relevant help and support.

Balance Test

Public knowledge of how the Force utilises the appropriate resources in order to best support and improve the wellbeing of WMP employees is a positive factor in disclosure.

However, disclosure of this nature is more likely to have an adverse effect by enabling those with unauthorised access, to access the EAP, resulting in an increase in traffic on the site and ultimately hinder WMP employees from utilising this resource.

Therefore, it is my decision that the case for disclosure of the Force’s login details for EAP is not made out and the application of the exemption is maintained for this part of the request.

Section 40 – Personal information

Section 40(2) is an absolute and class based exemption if to release the information exists would breach the third party’s data protection rights. In this case to release this personal information would not constitute fair processing of the data. As this exemption is class based I am not required to identify the harm in disclosure and in this instance I believe that the right to privacy outweighs any public interest in release.

Attachments

TRIM Policy

Wellbeing Strategy document

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