HSE statistics show workplace stress, depression and anxiety on the rise

According to a recent YouGov poll, construction industry workers in the UK are being failed by their employers
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Statistics published by the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) show improvement in some areas but also show concerning trends in workplace stress, depression and anxiety.

The latest statistics published by the HSE which include work-related ill health and non-fatal workplace injuries, show that 1.8 million workers suffered from a work-related illness in the period 2021-2022, up from 1.7 million the previous year. Over fifty percent of these cases are related to stress, depression, or anxiety.

Data shows that there were 123 workers killed in the same period and that 565,00 workers sustained a non-fatal injury up from 441,000 the previous year.

The construction industry has the highest level of fatalities of any sector – 30 in total.

HSE’s Chief Executive, Sarah Albon, said: “Stress and poor mental health is the number one cause of work-related ill health. The effects of stress, depression, and anxiety can have a significant impact on an employee’s life and on their ability to perform their best at work.

“Britain is one of the safest places in the world to work but we need all employers to do more and take seriously their responsibilities to support good mental health at work. That’s why improving mental health in the workplace is a key priority in our 10-year strategy ‘Protecting People and Places’, and why we’re developing new partnerships across industry to help employers support their employees.”

Industry Reaction

Robert Candy, Chief Executive of the Scaffolding Association said; “Almost a quarter of all workplace fatalities occur as a result of falls from height, which remains the single largest contributing factor – 29 for the period 2021-2022 and 29 too many.

Further, with over 50% of work-related ill health cases being a result of stress, depression or anxiety indicates a rapidly growing trend that employers must get to grips with to ensure employees are being offered the support they need.

Statistics published by the Chartered Institute of Building (CIOB) earlier this year suggest that in construction (a typically male dominated industry) that men are three times more likely to die by suicide than national average men. That equates to another 700 deaths every year in construction.”

To see the HSE statistics and statement in full see here.