Mental ill health, stress, threats and violence
Our mental and social work environment is just as important as the physical. On 31 March 2016, new provisions about organisational and social work environment come into effect.
New provisions against ill health
People should not need to become sick due to unhealthy workloads or victimisation at work. The new provisions about organisational and social work environment (AFS 2015:4), which come into effect in March 2016, regulate knowledge requirements, goals, workloads, working hours and victimisation. The provisions are adapted to today’s working life and clarify what employers and employees should do within the framework of the systematic work environment management that all employers have the responsibility to pursue.
More people suffer from mental ill health because of their job
In 2014, social and organisational factors were the second most common cause of reported occupational illnesses, after musculoskeletal factors. This concerns about a third of all reported occupational illnesses and is an increase of 70 per cent since 2010. Health care and social care, public administration and defence, as well as education come tops when it comes to the number of reports per 1 000 people working for a living, caused by organisational and social factors.
Keep your workplace healthy
It is the employer’s responsibility to work for a good work environment. With the help of systematic work environment management, the employer, together with the safety representative and employee can prevent or fix conditions that give rise to work-related stress, and create a functioning balance between demands and resources.
Read about how systematic work environment management can make your workplace better with healthier staff and better profitability.
Common causes of work-related stress
Two of the primary risks for work-related stress to arise are high workload and problems affecting the social interplay at the workplace. Some other common causes are shift work, working alone, and shortcomings in the physical environment.
The employer can prevent work-related stress through organisational measures. It can be about increasing resources in order to carry out the work, or reducing the demands in the work.
Bullying and victimisation
Bullying and victimisation at work are firstly a question for the employer and the safety organisation at a workplace. It is the employer who has the responsibility for the work environment being sound and safe, and making sure that victimisation is prevented. A starting point for preventing risks of bullying and victimisation is that the employer looks over the organisational conditions at the workplace.
Threats and violence
The employer has a responsibility to design and equip the workplace to prevent the risk of threats and violence as far as possible. With good preventive work it is possible to create a workplace where the staff can feel safe, even in activities where the risk of being subjected to threats and violence at work are substantial.
Last updated 2020-12-30