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Stress at work injury claims up twelve-fold in a year

first_img Comments are closed. Personal injury claims for work-related stress have increased twelve-foldover the past year, according to the TUC. Almost 6500 new cases were reportedthis year by TUC-affiliated unions, up from just 516 last year. TUC General Secretary John Monks described the rise as very worrying: “I do not want to join the blame race over stress at work. I want totalk about partnership, because trade unions want to be part of the solutionwhere stress is concerned, not part of the problem,” he said. Most of the large payouts so far have been in the public sector.Worcestershire County Council, for example, has had to pay out almost half amillion pounds in the past 18 months to four employees, most recently to asocial worker who won £140,000 after regularly working 70-80 hour weeks. Hastings and Rother NHS Trust paid the same amount to an employee forsubjecting her to extreme stress after she returned to work from maternityleave, although it was aware of her postnatal depression. Reckitt & Colman in Derby became the first ever private sector firm tobe sued for stress last year when it was forced to pay £55,000 to along-serving employee it exposed to “dangerous” pressure to meetperformance targets, despite being aware of his anxiety and depression. Lawyers are warning employers not to be complacent as more claimants manageto surmount the obstacles to winning stress damages. “There is a growing body of evidence linking workplace stress toserious illness, which reduces causation difficulties,” according to PaulWhite, a senior associate at Stephenson Harwood. “Furthermore, the courts are increasingly willing to accept thatstress-related illness was foreseeable and will give short shrift to companiesturning a blind eye to stressed staff.” Related posts:No related photos. Previous Article Next Article Stress at work injury claims up twelve-fold in a yearOn 1 Feb 2002 in Personnel Todaylast_img read more