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TUC Congress 2017: CSP wants action on mental health and stress

11 September 2017 - 4:45pm

The CSP backed a call for the government, employers and unions to support workers with mental health issues and tackle the root causes. 

Alex MacKenzie at TUC 2017

CSP delegate Alex MacKenzie speaking at TUC Congress

Speaking in support of a motion moved by UK trade union Community, at the TUC Congress in Brighton, the society highlighted the stress experienced by CSP members and urged unions to support workers.

CSP delegate Alex MacKenzie said: ‘Work related stress is a huge health and safety concern for us and for all trade union reps and members. There are 10 million lost working days per year and stress is responsible for a third of all new instances of work related ill health.

‘Our members in the NHS and elsewhere are struggling every day with cuts to funding and resources, increasing caseloads, paperwork and constant reorganisation,’ added Ms MacKenzie, chair of the CSP’s national group of regional stewards and a member of the society’s council.

Work-related stress 

She referred to the NHS staff survey results, which showed that 31 per cent of NHS physiotherapists reported feeling unwell because of work-related stress and pressure.

In addition, she highlighted some successes form the CSP’s Pinpoint the Pressure campaign, which seeks to tackles stress and workloads.

‘There have been some positive outcomes already, with trusts increasing the length of appointment times, updating equipment, changing the format of staff meetings and taking measures to improve communication in the department,’ she said.

Among its recommendations, the motion called for the TUC to

  • launch a national campaign for ‘significant new funding’ for mental health services 
  • raise awareness amongst all workers and employers in order to reduce the stigma and normalise conversations about mental health
  • support unions in running mental health awareness campaigns that engage their membership and employers

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