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BPS Advice on Supporting Each Other at Work Following the Death of a Colleague

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Grief at any time is difficult and painful and even under normal circumstances the death of a colleague can be challenging and represent a significant loss.

The realities of COVID-19 means that there are additional challenges for people mourning the death of a colleague due to the lack of access to support from friends, family and colleagues.

The British Psychological Society’s COVID-19 bereavement task force has launched a new document, ‘Supporting each other following the death of a colleague’, to help people understand their feelings and reaction if they do lose a colleague during this time.

Professor Nichola Rooney, chair of the task force, said:’Sadly, many people have been bereaved during the Covid-19 pandemic, with some grieving the death of a colleague.

‘We spend a lot of time at work and often form close bonds with people we work with, so losing a colleague at a time when we may not have our usual support networks can be particularly difficult.’

The booklet gives advice on how to cope with returning to work following the death of a colleague and encourages employees to take advantage of the support that is available to them and allowing for the fact that work may be affected by the grieving process.

It encourages people to take the opportunity to consider marking the death through a memorial at either at work or at home, if that is someone’s current workplace, but also to plan for other remembrance activities in the future once the current crisis abates.

The guidance is part of a suite of resources produced by the BPS’s Covid-19 bereavement task force, aimed at helping people manage their grief during the Coronavirus pandemic.


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