The number, 300,000, is from the UK. I have no doubt a similar survey in the US would results in millions of people fitting this bill. And most of them have a similar story to tell:
“She went on to explain that every Thursday she’d have to take the afternoon off and spoke to her boss. In the meeting, she was fine with it and was told ‘do what you need to do’ but after the meeting, Hayley received an email being told she was going to be taken off her accounts and that she should think about seeking employment at a mental health charity as ‘they might relate.’ Working there for a few further months triggered Hayley to experience anxiety and depression. “
Much of the problem with the workplace when it comes to mental health is simply the lack of flexibility. Instead of her boss saying, OK, if you need to go to see your therapist every Thursday afternoon, here’s what your workload looks like, here is what needs to get done regardless of your need to be out during that time, now let’s figure out the best way to do that,
Given all the technological advances we’ve made that allow for remote working, or after-hours working, there isn’t really any reason this couldn’t have been arranged and taken care of. I don’t get the impression this was a production line job or anything like that where you simply need to work certain hours. But we are so used to that thinking, and applying the “butts in seats” philosophy to our office environments, that we end up making it very difficult for perfectly capable people to continue working.
What I mean by that term is the manager who sees “work” as the hours spend sitting at your desk, while they are there to supervise you. Anything outside of that, is “not work”. So no, you can’t come in early, stay late, work from home, or on a weekend, because how do they even know you’re working during that time?
It’s an outdated, lazy, management style, but there are plenty of organizations who don’t have the imagination to do anything else. Even when it causes unnecessary turnover.