Managers say their employees’ personal lives shouldn’t be their concern. However, this isn’t the best approach because workplace mental health is an important matter. It’s a common mistake to forget the human nature of employees. As an employer, it’s important to be compassionate with those who work for you.
A pair of trending topics will be on the agenda at tomorrow’s meeting of the U.S. Department of Labor’s Advisory Committee on Construction Safety and Health (ACCSH) Workgroups. The Emerging and Current Issues workgroup will meet from 1:00 p.m. to 3:00 p.m. EST to discuss opioids and suicides in construction.
Finding a group activity that’s fun and promotes a healthy lifestyle can be challenging, especially if you want to think outside the box of a group spin class or yoga session. Fun fitness exercise options are out there, though, and engaging in group activities that get everyone moving can be advantageous for several reasons.
Employers grapple with the coronavirus, flight attendants cheer a proposed comfort animals on planes rule and indoor air quality affects construction workers, too. These were among the top occupational safety and health, environmental health and safety and regulatory stories featured on ISHN.com this week.
To help service members perform better in the field, military training emphasizes the importance of certain traits associated with traditional masculinity, including suppression of emotion and self-reliance. But when veterans return home, strict adherence to these traits can become detrimental, leading to more severe post-traumatic stress disorder symptoms and making it more difficult to treat, according to research published by the American Psychological Association (APA).
Nearly 20 percent of U.S. workers experience bullying in the workplace and 19 percent witness it, according to a national survey conducted by the Workplace Bullying Institute (WBI). The survey defined workplace bullying as “repeated mistreatment of an employee by one or more employees; abusive conduct that is: threatening, humiliating, or intimidating, work sabotage, or verbal abuse.” Although the WBI survey was conducted in 2017, the problem has not abated; in a 2019 Monster.com survey, nearly 94 percent out of responding employees reported being bullied in the workplace.
In a first-ever action, a company and its former managers were criminally prosecuted for institutional harassment associated with suicides among the company’s employees.
In a judgment last month, the Paris Criminal Court sentenced France Telecom to a fine of 75,000 euros - the maximum penalty – for institutional harassment that had spread from the leadership to the rest of the company in 2007-2008.
After increasing steadily from 2005 - 2015, workplace suicides in the U.S. hit a new record high in 2016 – 291 – according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. A total of 1,719 male and female workers committed suicide on the job between 2003 and 2007. Those numbers only takes into account suicides that occur at work.
Among occupational groups, male employees of construction and mining companies had the highest suicide rate: 53.2 deaths per 100,000 in 2015, up from 43.6 in 2012.
With suicide rates rising in the U.S., the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) is proposing the establishment of 988 as a national 3-digit number to help people access suicide prevention and mental health services. While a National Suicide Prevention Lifeline already exists – and can reached at (1-800-273-TALK) – FCC Chairman Ajit Pai says an easy-to-reach number would result in more people getting the assistance they need.
Among the articles in the October 2020 issue of ISHN Magazine, we answer questions on dangerous dusts, discuss respiratory protection programs and the risks and benefits of smoke tubes, and learn how to get creative with training programs.