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60% of UK staff suffer job-related mental health issues

Wednesday 4th October 2017
Some 60 per cent of UK employees have experienced work-related mental health issues, but only a handful of managers know how to deal with this. Image: gpointstudio via iStock
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Six in ten UK workers have experienced mental health conditions as a result of their work, new statistics reveal.

Business in the Community has published its Mental Health at Work Report 2017, which found that 60 per cent of employees believe they have developed anxiety, stress or depression as a result of their job.

Some 15 per cent of respondents revealed that they had faced the prospect of being demoted after experiencing poor mental health, with just over one in ten workers feeling as though they could tell their line manager about their condition.

This poor handling of mental health could be due to a significant lack of training among managerial staff, with less than one-quarter (24 per cent) having received any kind of training in this area.

Yet 84 per cent believe they have a degree of responsibility when it comes to safeguarding their employees' mental health and 91 per cent are aware that their actions can affect the wellbeing of their staff.

The report authors are therefore calling for mental health support workers and other organisations to take action and ensure that specialist training is offered to people in management positions across the country.

It is hoped that this will help to ensure all workers feel comfortable telling their line managers about any mental health issues they may be experiencing so they can take time off to recover, or receive extra support while they are at work, to help them through any particularly difficult periods.

Louise Aston, wellbeing director at Business in the Community, commented: "This report is an urgent call to action for collective leadership from employers to end this injustice and provide better support.

"It is time to challenge the myth that having a mental health issue equates to poor performance."

In response, a government spokesperson told Sky News: "We are determined to ensure people with mental health conditions are not held back in the workplace."

Written by Angela Newbury

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