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Health and wellbeing

Working for Diageo should be something to celebrate. We want our people to be healthy, engaged, and fulfilled.

We know that employees who feel healthy and valued in the workplace are more likely to deliver great performance, and ultimately contribute to the company’s long-term success.

Our approach to the health and wellbeing of employees takes many different forms, driven by a balance of global priorities and assessments of local need. For example, as a drinks company we believe it is crucial that our people understand the importance of responsible drinking. We promote this to our employees globally through a range of programmes including our interactive DRINKiQ sessions.

We also aim to provide health services and medication to help protect all employees and their families from health-related emergencies, such as the bird flu pandemic in 2008. Other health needs are more localised, and are addressed at the level of individual sites or regions, as with our HIV / AIDs prevention programmes across Africa, which provide employees and their families with HIV and AIDS education and treatment.

Our professional occupational health resources are also tailored to the needs of employees at each site, based on a global recognition of the importance of exercise and relaxation to wellbeing. Many larger sites have on-site fitness centres, while employees elsewhere have subsidised access to external fitness facilities or, in some cases, on-site health clinics.

Responsible drinking

Our internal DRINKiQ initiative is designed both to help employees make responsible decisions for themselves, and to give them the confidence to be ambassadors for responsible drinking. In an internal evaluation of more than 1,000 participants in 2009, 85% claimed they felt better equipped to have conversations about responsible drinking as a result of attending the DRINKiQ workshop, and nearly three-quarters claimed the workshop made them more likely to consider drinking differently. DRINKiQ is now part of our employee induction programme in 21 countries.

Combating HIV/AIDS

Since 2003, our operating companies across Africa have adopted HIV and AIDS workplace education and prevention initiatives, and provided treatment for employees and their families, through the Live Life employee wellness programme. Live Life includes:

  • HIV/AIDS education and awareness programmes
  • Training of peer educators, known as Life Coaches, in additional wellness topics
  • Access to free voluntary counselling and testing (VCT)
  • Healthy living, fitness and nutrition advice
  • Promotion and distribution of condoms
  • Treatment and care programmes for opportunistic diseases
  • Free anti-retroviral drugs for the management of HIV infection
  • Occupational health practice at all operations and on-site medical clinics.

Occupational health

We recognise the importance of exercise and relaxation, and the benefits they bring to productivity and wellbeing in the workplace. Some of our larger facilities have on-site fitness centres which all employees and guests can enjoy. At some other sites, employees can enjoy subsidised memberships to external fitness facilities. Elsewhere, we offer health and wellbeing programmes such as dedicated ambassadors who promote wellbeing in the office, or team competitions encouraging exercise and healthy eating.

In each region and site, we assess the need of employees. At our Tusker plant in Kenya, for example, our staff clinic became fully operational in July 2011, giving employees access to medical treatment 24 hours a day, at weekends, and over bank holidays. In the United Kingdom and Ireland, among a range of other benefits, health surveillance programmes protect employees against noise-induced loss of hearing, hand arm vibration syndrome, work-related skin conditions, and work-related respiratory conditions. New and expectant mothers, night workers, lone workers, vocational drivers, and employees who work in confined spaces or at heights receive pro-active health testing, while our health promotion and health education activities have been recognised by the Scottish Government’s Healthy Working Lives awards.

And in North America, the Striding Towards Wellness programme inspires employees to take charge of their total wellbeing by providing information about managing health, access to useful tools and resources, and activities that promote a balanced lifestyle. The programme has prompted wellness fairs, cancer, diabetes, and heart health awareness events, and fitness programmes.

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