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October 2014

LRD carries out eleventh TUC Safety Reps Survey

Stress, bullying and harassment, overwork, back strains and slips, and trips and falls on a level were the top five hazards cited by respondents to the TUC's 11th safety rep survey 2014 TUC safety rep survey, carried out by LRD. This is the 11th biennial safety rep survey in the series, and the seventh conducted by LRD.

In top place was stress. Over two-thirds of safety reps (67%) taking part in the survey said that stress, and the effect it was having on their colleagues, was one of the main concerns they have to deal with at work.

Concern over stress has risen to alarming levels in central government, cited as a top-five concern by 87% (compared with 80% in 2012).

Bullying and harassment has become a key hazard to watch as it has grown steadily as a top-five concern throughout the period of the TUC's safety rep surveys. The category was changed from "bullying" to "bullying and harassment" for the 2010 survey, in which 37% cited it as a top-five concern. The figure rose to 41% in 2012 and is now 46%.

Bullying and harassment is a particular problem in the public sector, where half of safety reps identify it as one of their top five hazards.

But it was also cited by eight out of 11 respondents in the banking, insurance and finance sector, equivalent to 73%.

Concern over overwork has crept up again, with 36% of representatives listing it as a top-five concern, compared with 33% in 2012 and 29% in 2010. Again it is much more prevalent in the public sector, where it is picked out by 42% of reps, compared with 27% in the private sector.

One in six of the workplace reps who completed the survey say their employers are failing to conduct risk assessments, which is a breach of health and safety law.

TUC general secretary Frances O'Grady said: "It's shocking that so many employers are breaking the law and putting their staff at risk of illness and accidents by their sheer negligence."

Read the full report at www.tuc.org.uk/sites/default/files/Safety_Representatives_Survey_2014.pdf


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