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Mental Health

Monday, 15 to Sunday, 21 May 2023 marks Mental Health Awareness Week.


Ryan ClementContributor

Without doubt I am happy to promote this very important annual awareness. This year, the theme is ‘anxiety.’

I believe this year’s theme will be enlightening and educational for many of us, myself included.


As a barrister who has represented many claimants with disabilities under the Equality Act 2010, I would often come across anxiety upon which a claimant relies as their impairment.

However, this is rarely their sole impairment. It is frequently accompanied by depression, as in ‘anxiety and depression.’

It would be fair to say that most focus primarily on the latter than the former. I have no explanation for this.

However, I think most of us can articulate depression better than we can anxiety when considering it in light of s.6 Equality Act 2010, which requires that, in order for a claimant to be deemed to be disabled under the Act, an impairment has to have a substantial and long-term adverse effect on the claimant’s ability to carry out normal day-to-day activities.

We have all suffered different levels of anxiety such as, for example, attending a job interview; preparing for exams; giving a presentation at school, university or at work; moving house; moving to a new school; going to university etc.

Most of these are temporary and may be perfectly normal, as they do not ordinarily have a substantial and long-term adverse effect on the sufferer’s ability to carry out normal day-to-day activities or have a substantial and long term adverse effect on the sufferer’s mental health.


However, as stated by NHS UK, “some people find it hard to control their worries. Their feelings of anxiety are more constant and can often affect their daily lives.” According to the NHS UK, anxiety is the main symptom of several conditions, including:

This and the following blogs this week, which I shall write for, ‘Mental Health Awareness Week 2023,’ are not about a diagnosis of or prognosis for anxiety – I am not qualified to do this – but viewing it in the context of employment and employment law and from an Human Resources (HR) perspective in dealing with an employee who is suffering from anxiety.

Some blogs will be accompanied by short (1 minute or less) videos. They will cover the elements of disability, the employer’s duty to make reasonable adjustments for those suffering from a disability, the various forms associated with disability discrimination and the employer’s exposure if found to have acted unlawfully against a disabled person.


Finally, although these series of blogs are not from a medical perspective I shall post links to sites I find that might be of assistance.

PLEASE NOTE that if you feel you are suffering from anxiety you are strongly advised to inform/seek help from your GP.

Ryan Clement, LLM, BA, BSc, Barrister

First Among Equals



Ryan ClementContributor

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