Workplace stress kills. I know this will come as no shock to many who have felt its effects first-hand. But we hear more about heart disease and cancer, gun violence and other causes of death, causes with more research efforts and initiatives to cure the situations. As a public health issue, workplace violence has gotten more attention. Workplace stress, however, sends many people into paid or unpaid leave, causes physical and mental damage, and ruins the enjoyment of their career.
This recent article reports on a new study. The study focuses on several causes of stress, including lack of health insurance and overwork. Mistreatment at the job can be addressed more easily than large financial shifts in an employer's operations.
I have been interested in the possibility of enacting anti-bullying legislation, but so far it has not gotten very far in the General Assembly. As anti-bullying initiatives, especially in school settings, continue to proliferate, however, hope remains that the workplace could be next. Sadly, many employers ignore complaints about their bullies, and allow them to treat their subordinates in demeaning and damaging ways. Does anyone believe that this helps the bottom line? When employees lose their enthusiasm, take mental health breaks, and possibly sabotage their own work out of frustration or resentment? Many people and school systems are rethinking the old notion that all children need to learn how to deal with bullies, so adults won’t interfere. The same thinking should be applied to the modern workplace.