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BioCity signs the Time to Change Employer Pledge as part of their CSR strategy

BioCity signs the Time to Change Employer Pledge as part of their CSR strategy

Pioneering life science incubator and business collective, BioCity Group has signed the Time to Change Employer Pledge, making a commitment to changing the way we all think and act about mental health in the workplace.

BioCity, which has headquarters in Nottingham and locations in Glasgow and Alderley Park aims to raise awareness of mental health and continue to provide healthy workplaces which support the physical and mental good health of their employees.

The pledge is delivered by Time to Change, a campaign run since 2009 by charities Mind and Rethink Mental Illness. Founded on the principles of the 2017 Thriving at Work Report and built upon 5 years of evidence-based interventions, it supports employers to create a more open and understanding culture around mental health problems in the workplace.

Time to Change has put together an employer six step action plan to give employers the tools to: produce, implement and communicate a mental health at work plan; develop mental health awareness among employees; encourage open conversations about mental health and the support available when employees are struggling; provide employees with good working conditions and ensure they have a healthy work-life balance and opportunities for development; promote effective people management through line managers and supervisors; and routinely monitor employee mental health and wellbeing.

BioCity is one of the latest organisations to take the pledge, in advance of the retirement of the Employer Pledge in June 2020. The pledge had been signed by over 1500 organisations employing over four million people across England, representing over 10% of the working population of the UK.

Signing the employer pledge is part of BioCity’s ongoing commitment to health and wellbeing in the workplace. In 2019, the organisation trained 3 mental health first aiders, and it intends to recruit mental health champions and continue training staff over the next 12 months.

The organisation will continue to raise awareness by hosting internal events on national days such as World Mental Health Day (10 October 2020) and Time to Talk (6 February 2020).

Toby Reid, CEO of BioCity Group said: “For too long, the challenges and impacts of mental health have been overlooked in both the workplace and wider society. BioCity is committed to ensuring that awareness of, conversations about and support for mental health issues are at the heart of all that we do as a responsible employer. As such, we are very proud to sign up to the Time to Change Employers Pledge.”

Jo Loughran, Director of Time to Change added: “We’re delighted to see BioCity take the Time to Change Employers Pledge. By signing the pledge and introducing line manager training and awareness activities led by TTC Champions, BioCity are demonstrating a real commitment to changing the way we all think and act about mental health in the workplace.”

“We know it can be hard to talk about mental health, which is why we work with employers to encourage staff at all levels to open up; to talk and to listen. Too many people with mental health problems are made to feel isolated, ashamed and worthless, but with the right support, those of us with mental health problems can recover and have equal opportunities in all areas of life. Everyone’s attitude makes a difference and it’s fantastic to see organisations like BioCity taking the lead.”


Notes to editors:

About BioCity

Home to more than 200 companies, BioCity is a pioneering life science incubator and business collective. Where ideas become reality, investment flows and businesses succeed.

Not the typical business incubator, BioCity takes a holistic approach to business support. Offering entrepreneur coaching, investment, flexible lab and office space and PAYG services within a UK-wide business collective.

Founded in 2002 by the University of Nottingham and Nottingham Trent University, BioCity originated in a former BASF Pharma research facility in Nottingham city centre.

In 2012 BioCity acquired the MSD research facility in Newhouse near Glasgow to create Glasgow, BioCity. This was closely followed by a second site in Nottingham, MediCity, which is located on the Boots campus and is a collaboration with Walgreens Boots Alliance. In 2016 the Newhouse site was further expanded to create Glasgow, MediCity. BioCity also operates at Alderley Park, Cheshire, Aberdeen and Newcastle.

The company has made more than 30 investments in early stage companies and has delivered a healthy growth in portfolio valuation. Funds are deployed from its own cash reserves and from a joint venture vehicle with AstraZeneca which BioCity manages.

In 2017, BioCity was identified as one of Europe’s fastest growing companies in the Financial Times’ FT 1000 report. The BioCity model of ‘support from inception to incorporation’ initially challenged the industry standard but quickly became the industry leader due to the unprecedented survival rates of BioCity based businesses.

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Time to Change

We are Time to Change, a growing movement of people changing how we all think and act about mental health problems. Our voice is stronger and louder thanks to funding from the Department of Health and Social Care, Comic Relief and the National Lottery Community Fund. Our campaign is run by Mind and Rethink Mental Illness, and thousands more organisations have joined us to make change happen.