More can be done to support workers in the pub trade suffering from mental health issues, a survey has revealed.

This week is Mental Health Awareness Week in the UK (May 13 to 19).

To coincide with the event, The Licensed Trade Charity has released the results of a survey of the pub trade which showed that whilst the industry does not face a severe issue, more can be done.

The survey of 370 workers was carried out to provide an insight into the impact of mental health issues within pubs and bars.

The survey, which included licensees, managers and bar staff, was conducted in April.

It revealed that 12 per cent of respondents admitted a mental health issue that had caused them to be absent from work. This echoes wider research within the UK economy as a whole, which shows that 12.7 per cent of all sickness absence days can be attributed to mental health conditions.

And 38 per cent of respondents said they had worked with someone who has suffered from mental health issues.

Meanwhile, 55 per cent of respondents said they and their colleagues would benefit from having a greater understanding of mental health issues and their impact – something the charity is striving to address.

The Licensed Trade Charity is at the forefront of a campaign to create that greater understanding, through a three-year commitment to monthly training events for managers.

Funded by the Worshipful Company of Innholders, free sessions take place every month around the country for managers to learn more about the warning signs to look out for and how to deal with a staff member who appears to be suffering mentally. 

Tackling mental health issues could save the industry millions, with hospitality industry staff making up 10 per cent of workers in the UK economy. Overall the UK is estimated to forego £25 billion in gross value through the cost of mental health problems, including absence, staff turnover and lost productivity.

Pubs and breweries are increasingly doing more to combat the issue, such as Youngs recently hosting a mental health training day for staff, and Heineken providing mental health champion training.

Jim Brewster, chief executive of the LTC, said: "Whilst the survey results are encouraging that our industry does not appear out of line with the UK as a whole on mental health, despite being a demanding but rewarding career choice, we know more can be done.

"It is reassuring that so many pub companies are working hard in this area to support their staff, and also making full use of our services such as the 24/7 helpline, free counselling and training for managers.

"We will continue to drive forward innovation in this area to enable us to support pub, bar and brewery workers on mental health, as we do in so many other aspects."

To find out more and register your interest in attending a one-day course on tackling mental health issues, go to http://bit.ly/LTCMentalHealthTraining.