Breaking the stigma - Empowering mental health support
Dear fellow Pilots,
I would like to introduce you all to our mental health support campaign, Safe Haven, a subject I feel very passionate about. The aim is to help and support marine pilots who may be dealing with mental health issues related to work or in general circumstances.
During my time working at sea, I have witnessed fellow colleagues struggling with their mental health but feeling unable to open up due to the stigma and negative attitudes surrounding the subject. I strongly believe those days are behind us, and we should feel free to openly discuss these issues and support one another through difficult times, with the hope of preventing their condition from worsening.
One thing is certain: piloting involves teamwork, and our strength lies in supporting each other to maintain our professional skills and ensure the safe movement of ship trade through our ports and waters.
As a pilot, I have learned that there can be immense work pressures and very challenging conditions to deal with. Over time, this can have a major impact on our mental well-being, and nobody should feel ashamed about feeling this way. We should feel supported throughout the process of our recovery by our support and work network.
The mental well-being of a pilot is essential for carrying out our duties and for the future of our career, this can become impaired when dealing with an incident or accident, depending on the severity of the case. Recent cases have shown that speaking to a fellow colleague or someone outside of your workforce can significantly help with the process and prevent the anxiety and possibly depression that may affect those involved after an incident or accident.
The bottom line is, nobody should suffer in silence. We need to break the stigma and encourage open dialogue. This is the only way we can eliminate the old mentality. We are all human, and we all cope with situations and feelings in very different ways. Let’s talk.
James Musgrove – Pilot – Region 3Visit our mental health support page in the members area
'Safe Haven' provides the following support:
- Web Contact Form: An email service that enables members to communicate through messaging instead of phone calls.
- Hotline: Connects you to a fellow pilot who is qualified in the field of mental health.
- Links: Directing members to professional mental health support services.