1. Bullying in the Workplace
Some Statistics from the US [by Sheila Freeman JP]:
  • 21% or 1 in 5 US workers are bullied
  • 81% of bullies are bosses
  • 41% of bullied individuals were diagnosed with depression
  • Over 80% reported health effects such as sever anxiety, lost concentration, sleeplessness
  • 31% of female and 21% of male victims suffered from post traumatic stress disorder
  • 82% of bullied individuals lost their jobs (44% involuntary departure, 38% voluntary)
  • In 51% of cases Human Resources did nothing to help the victim despite requests
  • In 32% of cases HR supported the bully by reacting negatively to the victim
  • In the US, work related diseases including stress account for a total cost of $26 billion annually
2. Stress in the Workplace
Some ‘Stress Statistics’ from Australia:
  • Stress in the workplace is increasing
    • 1 in 3 adults suffer from moderate to extreme stress. (ABS National Health Survey 2001/ Grant Thornton IBOS Survey 2004)
    • This represents an increase of nearly 40% in just 4 years. (ABS National Health Survey 2001)
  • Stress in the workplace costs money
    • Stress-related workers compensation claims have increased by 400% in the last 10 years (WorkCover SHM June 2004)
    • The payout costs have doubled in the last 6 years (Vic WorkCover Hugh Keller @bdw July 2004)
    • Average claim costs, in NSW in 2000, were over $23,000 each (WorkCover SMH June 2004)
    • The total cost of Australian workplace stress, is now estimated to be $1.2 billion p.a. (ACTU Bill Mansfield May 2000)
  • Stress not only costs in terms of compensation claims, but also in lost productivity:
    • Work-related stress accounts for the longest stretches of absenteeism (National Health and Safety Commission, Better Health Channel Vic Gov July 2004)
    • The average NSW claimant, takes over 20 weeks off work, a year (WorkCover SHM June 2004)
  • The stress problem is even bigger than these figures show
    • GPs report that less than half of the work-related symptoms presented to them, receive workers compensation (University of Sydney & the Australian Institute of Health and Welfare 2000)
    • World Health Organisation lists stress at work, as one of the top ten key determinants of poor health, and urges the OHS community to take action (WHO: The Solid Facts, Professor Michael Marmot 2000 ref ACTU)

3. Depression
According to the US National Mental Health Association:
  • Approximately 12 million women in the United States experience clinical depression each year
  • About one in every eight women can expect to develop clinical depression during their lifetime
The symptoms of depression in women are the same as those for major depression. Common complaints include:
  • Depressed mood
  • Loss of interest or pleasure in activities you used to enjoy
  • Feelings of guilt, hopelessness and worthlessness
  • Suicidal thoughts or recurrent thoughts of death
  • Sleep disturbance (sleeping more or sleeping less)
  • Appetite and weight changes
  • Difficulty concentrating
  • Lack of energy and fatigue
Depression can come in different levels of severity, and represents a serious psychological illness. However women feel depressed, emotionally hurt, mentally confused, spiritually harassed, or a mixture of all of these. Especially if they encounter problems after giving birth or problems at work.
4. Sexual Harassment
  • 31% of the female workers claimed to have been harassed at work
  • 7% of the male workers claimed to have been harassed at work
  • 62% of targets took no action
  • 100% of women claimed the harasser was a man
  • 59% of men claimed the harasser was a woman
  • 41% of men claimed the harasser was another man
Of the women who had been harassed:
  • 43% were harassed by a supervisor
  • 27% were harassed by an employee senior to them
  • 19% were harassed by a coworker at their level
  • 8% were harassed by a junior employee
Studies suggest anywhere between 40-70% of women and 10-20% of men have experienced sexual harassment in the workplace.

A 1999 survey by the Society for Human Resource Management states that 62% of companies offer sexual harassment prevention training programs, and 97% have a written sexual harassment policy.
Lord, I am not worthy to receive you
but only say the word and I shall be healed


Lilian Schmid | Coordinator
+61 (0)412 766 917
Sydney, Australia
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