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News Media Releases Unsociable work hours bad for health, relationships and productivity
Unsociable work hours bad for health, relationships and productivity
Thursday, 19 April 2012 12:35

As many West Australians enjoy time with family and friends during the Easter, School break and ANZAC Day holidays, UnionsWA today highlighted a new survey showing that corporate Australia lacks strategies to deal with mental health issues at work.

A survey of Australia’s top 300 companies by Chartered Secretaries Australia (CSA) revealed that over 40 per cent did not perceive mental illness as a potential risk and of those that did said they did not have policies in place to manage this risk.

Simone McGurk, Secretary UnionsWA said:

“This survey shows corporate Australia lacks an awareness of workforce mental health issues and has too few strategies in place to address this growing problem.”
 
“If we want to address poor mental health and lost work productivity then we should support workers taking holidays and put checks on the 24/7 economy.”

Recently the Chamber of Commerce and Industry in WA derided “the old concept of the eight hour day” while Premier Barnett, when introducing Sunday trading, announced he will move to abolish penalty rates for those working after-hours.  The Parliamentary Inquiry into Fly-in Fly-out (FIFO) work this week heard evidence from the Australian Medical Association of WA that such unsociable work contributes to relationship breakdown.

“There is a push on by the Barnett Government and employers for more unsociable working hours.

“Trends show that more and more people are working long, unsociable hours and take too few holidays. 

“This affects even highly paid FIFO workers as well as many are poorly paid workers in hospitality, retail and service sectors. 

“Premier Barnett wants to abolish penalty rates, doing so would reduce pay and further expand unsociable working hours and all the problems that brings.

 “How can this be good for mental health, family and community relationships?”

pdf Media Release Work Health and Productivity 380.19 Kb  

References:

Chartered Secretaries Australia Media Release ‘Mental health not on the corporate risk radar’ Thursday 12 April 2012
http://www.csaust.com/news-media/media-releases/2012/apr/mental-health-not-on-the-corporate-risk-radar.aspx

Premier Barnett:
“...I don’t think it’s fair that people working in a shop on a weekend, and often they’re part time and casual workers, get paid more, a higher hourly rate, than people that work during in the week. They are the more important anomalies...We’ll sort out the anomalies in a year’s time.”
Wednesday, 22 February 2012 6PR Mornings Paul Murray

James Pearson, CEO Chamber of Commerce and Industry of West Australia:
“...the old concept of the 8 hour day has come under pressure as modern life and modern working practices have changed...what we want to see is that the provisions around the employer-employee relationships be changed to reflect those changed conditions.”
  ABC 720 Perth Morning Program with Andrew O’Connor, Wednesday, 4 April 2012 8:35 am

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