About Stampede Stigma

A campaign to end the stigma and discrimination faced by those experiencing mental health issues.

Who we are

We’re working to change attitudes and behaviours towards people with mental health issues, so that they don’t have to live in shame, isolation and silence. We aim to create inclusive and supportive environments, in which people are comfortable to discuss their experiences, because no one should have to fear being treated differently because of a mental health issue.

Stampede Stigma is a Wellways Australia initiative.

We know that many people still don’t consider mental health relevant to them. They don’t believe mental health issues are likely to affect them or people they know. But the reality is that mental health issues can and do affect many people in our community.

Why is this important?

1 in 5 Australians will experience a mental health issue in any given year, and almost 1 in 2 Australians will experience a mental health issue in their lifetime.

Not only are mental health issues prevalent in our community, but people who experience mental health issues continue to face stigma and discrimination at alarming rates. 3 out of 4 people say they have faced stigma and discrimination as a result of their mental health issue.

60% of people say that stigma and discrimination are as damaging, or more damaging, than the symptoms of their mental health issues and 54% percent of people say they are impacted most by such stigma in their place of work. Stigma and discrimination prevent people from seeking help: this can delay treatment and impair recovery.

It isolates people, excluding them from day-to-day activities and making it hard to build new relationships or sustain current ones. It can stop people getting or keeping jobs. Experiencing a mental health issues is hard enough, without having to deal with the shame and isolation that often comes with it. We all have a role to play in creating inclusive communities, free from stigma and discrimination.


Stigma in the workplace

Tackling stigma and discrimination and developing a culture where employees feel able to talk openly about their mental health issues should be a number one priority within every workplace. 

54% percent of people with mental health issues say they are impacted most by such stigma in their place of work.

In 2014, a study by PricewaterhouseCoopers reported the rate of absences from work is, on average, about five percentage points higher among Australian workers who report being in poor mental health.

  • Every year a cost of $10.8 billion is incurred by employers as a result of poor mental health.
  • Reduced productivity due to poor mental health costs Australian employers $6.1 billion annually.
  • Mental ill-health is the leading cause of health-related absence in Australia, costing Australian employers $4.7 billion annually.
  • Employees with job-related stress and mental illness were absent from work for an average of almost 11 weeks a year in Australia
  • 300,000 people leave their place of work each year due to poor mental health.

Why a zebra?

Stampede Stigma uses a zebra and subtle humour to engage people to learn about mental health, encourage conversations about stigma and support all of us to take action to reduce stigma and discrimination in our homes, workplaces and communities.

About Wellways Australia

Wellways Australia is a leading not-for-profit provider specialising in mental health, disability support, carer, youth and community care services. Established in 1978, Wellways provides services across Queensland, New South Wales, the Australian Capital Territory, Victoria and Tasmania. We dedicate resources to advocacy, to ensure systems are responsible and equitable, and society is inclusive. Our Vision is for an inclusive community where everyone can imagine and achieve their hopes and potential. We work with individuals, families and the community to help them imagine and achieve better lives.

We are committed to inclusive communities

Wellways acknowledges Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander People as the traditional owners and custodians of the land on which we live, work and play and pays respect to their Elders past and present.

We are committed to inclusive communities, workplaces, policies and services for people of all backgrounds, genders, sexualities, cultures, bodies and abilities.