According to the TUC’s biennial survey of ill health in the workplace, stress is the biggest health and safety worry for office workers in the UK. Injuries and illnesses caused by the poor use of display screen equipment and repetitive strain injuries also score highly as concerns.
Three-fifths of safety reps say that stress or overwork as a concern in their workplace. This number climbs in public sector environments with the highest instances in central government (81 per cent), education (74 per cent) and health services (69 per cent). London workers (68 per cent) are most worried about stress. Other sectors report different top concerns at work, for instance, manufacturing (noise), construction, distribution and hotels (back strains) and voluntary organisations (display screen equipment).
As TUC General Secretary Brendan Barber said. “Stress casts a gloomy shadow over far too many UK workplaces. And as the current economic crisis creates more anxiety about job security, stress is likely to increase.
“Unions and employers must work together to combat this as it can have a huge personal cost to workers and a damaging cost to businesses.”