Acas has published a study revealing that workplace bullying is increasing in the UK, and it is having a serious impact on individual wellbeing, organisational performance and the economy. In the last year, Acas received 20,000 calls relating to bullying at work. Research consistently shows that bullying is most common in organisations with poor workplace climates. Too often, managers alerted to bullying simply move staff around rather than deal with underlying behaviours. The problem is best prevented by strategies that focus on worker wellbeing and good relations, giving employees and managers the confidence to engage in early and informal resolution.
We advise having a separate policy dealing with workplace bullying and harassment. Having such a policy in place, and ensuring it is properly implemented, makes it clear to employees that the business takes such allegations seriously and is willing to take action. Please get in touch if you would like further advice.
The European Commission has launched a public consultation on how to address work-life balance challenges faced by working parents and caregivers. Its aim is to gather views on the development and implementation of a range of possible tools at EU-level to support work-life balance. The consultation document notes that women are increasingly well-qualified, yet continue to be under-represented in the labour market. It concludes that despite existing EU legislation, country-specific monitoring, policy guidance, and financial support to improve work-life balance and female labour market participation, the situation in member states remains uneven.
The consultation will run until 17 February 2016, and contributions are welcomed from all citizens, organisations and public authorities.