Affiliations: Department of Educational and Social Policy, University of Macedonia, 156 Egnatia Street, 54006, Thessaloniki, Greece. Tel.: +30 2310 891403; E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org
Abstract: BACKGROUND:Stigma and discrimination against people with mental illness have a negative impact on their vocational integration. The rates of their labor force participation worldwide are still low. The reason for this, from the perspective of employers, is their reluctance to employ them due to a number of fears and concerns. OBJECTIVE:This review examines the literature of the last 25 years on the employment of people with mental illness to identify employers’ benefits from their employment and to provide recommendations for occupational therapists. FINDINGS:The importance of employing individuals with mental illness is emphasized. This review identifies a research gap on the benefits of their employment from the perspective of employers, and presents the findings of studies that explore the benefits of employing individuals with disabilities. CONCLUSIONS:Information and greater awareness are pointed out to be the major ways of improving the employment rates of people with mental illness. The proposed challenge for occupational therapists is to demonstrate the effectiveness of their employment to all interested parties. Future research should focus on the economic impact of mental illnesses and on the outcomes of employing individuals with mental illness from the perspective of employers.