Stress information & websites

Some of the following resources are websites - from which you can download documents - others are documents or guidelines.

Websites:

  • WorkSafe Victoria: Health and Safety Topic webpage on Stress
  • Comcare Australia: Work-related Mental Stress and Psychosocial Hazards pages
  • Work Cover Queensland has a topic page on Work-related Stress. The regulator has also produced some valuable resources, including the People at Work Project which is a psychosocial risk assessment process. It measures how different workplace characteristics influence worker health and well-being, focusing particularly on risks to psychological health. The project has a People at Work Survey, and more resources for organisations. 
  • European Agency for Safety and Health at Work Topic information page on Psychosocial risks and stress at work
  • US National Institute of Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) topic Stress at Work  with links to publications and related pages.
  • The UK Health and Safety Executive (HSE) webpage: Work related Stress  has a wealth of information. The HSE has also produced Management Standards for work-related stress with practical advice aimed at anyone with responsibility for tackling work-related stress in an organisation. 

    UK's TUC, the equivalent of the VTHC, says the standards are an effective tool to assist organizations to identify the causes of workplace stress and implement practical solutions to manage the risks, and has produced a guide for OHS reps to help them encourage their employer to implement them.  The guidelines give a background on the problem of stress, outline the standards and what employers must do, explain the process and tells reps where they can get further information.  The TUC also has a Stress webpage.
  • The Work Stress Network -  provides information about and related to Job Strain and Work Stress

Guides and materials:

     
  • PRIMA - a consortium of the ILO, the WHO and ohs organisations, has released the Psychosocial Risk Management Excellence Framework This new resource is a collation of best practice programs in management of psychosocial hazards. The database can be searched according to the type of intervention (primary, secondary or tertiary) and also the country where the intervention was developed/is in place. The PRIMA Inventory of Best Practice covers:
    • Work Related Stress
    • Violence and
    • Bullying and Harassment
  • The European Agency for Safety and Health at Work (EU-OSHA) has a great deal of material on stress:
    • Psychosocial risks and stress at work -  entry page
    • Practical tools for managing stress and psychosocial risks. Work-related stress and psychosocial risks can be successfully assessed and managed, just as any other occupational safety and health issue can. Here are some user-friendly and effective practical tools particularly helpful for small enterprises, enabling them to fulfil their legal obligations and improve organisational performance. The tools guide users through assessment of psychosocial risks and show how to implement actions to eliminate or reduce these risks, even with limited resources.
    • a 2014 practical  E-guide to Managing Stress and Psychological Risks. It provides information about work-related stress and psychosocial risks to foster awareness, understanding and management of these issues in the workplace. The e-guide is designed to respond to the needs of employers and people working in small enterprises, who are starting to approach psychosocial risks in the workplace. The guide is available in a number of 'national versions which refer to any relevant legislation in that particular country.
    • On OSH-WIKI  Work-related stress, its nature and management.
    • A 2014 report: 'Calculating the cost of work-related stress and psychosocial risks', summarises the studies focusing on this area. The report finds the main costs for individuals relate to health impairment, lower income and reduced quality of life. Organisations are affected by costs related to absenteeism, presenteeism, reduced productivity or high staff turnover. Health care costs and poorer business outcomes ultimately affect national economies and society.  The report can be downloaded free from this page of the Agency's website.
    • Healthy Workplaces Manage Stress Campaign Guide
      The key task of the 2014–15  Healthy Workplaces Manage Stress Campaign is raising awareness of stress and psychosocial risks in the workplace and encouraging employers, managers and workers and their representatives to work together to manage those risks.  The Campaign Guide (download here) presents the main principles and objectives of the campaign. It includes definitions of stress and psychosocial risks, and contains useful facts and figures to help employers and workers in awareness-raising activities.  Tackling stress and psychosocial risks creates a healthy work environment, improves worker well-being and business performance. To promote these outcomes, the main focuses of the campaign are: raising awareness of work-related stress and psychosocial risks;  providing and promoting simple, practical tools and guidance for managing psychosocial risks and stress in the workplace; and highlighting the positive effects of managing psychosocial risks and stress in the workplace, including the business case.
    • two Fact sheets on Stress:  Practical Advice for Workers on Tackling Work-related Stress and its Causes  and How to Tackle Psychosocial Issues and Reduce Work-related Stress  [these are available in a number of languages]
    • A report Prevention of psychosocial risks and stress at work in practice
      The report presents 20 examples of good practice in preventing psychosocial risks and stress. The examples are all award winners or commended entries in a European competition, run as part of the European Week for Safety and Health at Work 2002.
    • A special work stress issue of their magazine: Working on Stress - downloads as a pdf (released to coincide with the European Week of Health and Safety 2002)
    • A Framework Agreement on Work-Related Stress (October 2004 - updated 2006) signed by Europe's social partners (UNICE, ETUC, UEAPME, CEEP) to provide a framework for employers and workers to identify and prevent or manage problems of work-related stress. At the same time the social partners have announced their intention to explore the possibilities of reaching a specific agreement on issues of harassment and violence at work.
    • Another report - Expert forecast on emerging psychosocial risks related to occupational safety and health [can be downloaded from this page]
  • From the International Labour Organisation (ILO): Stress Prevention at Work Checkpoints. Practical improvements for stress prevention in the workplace, ILO, January 2012. The manual, which can be ordered or downloaded free, includes easy-to-apply checkpoints for identifying stressors in working life and mitigating their harmful effects. The manual also provides guidance on linking workplace risk assessment with the process of stress prevention. The checkpoints are good practice for enterprises and organizations in general, and they are especially useful for companies and organizations that wish to incorporate stress prevention into their overall occupational safety and health policy and management systems. Each of the checkpoints – illustrated in full colour – describes an action, indicates why it is necessary and how to carry it out, and provides further hints and points to remember. Also:  Developing a workplace stress prevention programme
  • High intensity work linked to stress
    A 2014 study examining psychosocial risks which finds that a quarter of European workers suffer work stress that negatively impacts their health. Psychosocial risks in Europe: Prevalence and strategies for prevention, jointly published by EU-OSHA and the European Foundation for the Improvement of Working and Living Conditions. Psychosocial risks, such as monotonous tasks, high work intensity, low autonomy, tight deadlines, work-life imbalance, violence and harassment from the public or from colleagues, contributed to work-related stress. While fewer people reported working long hours, job insecurity and work intensity increased due to the economic situation in Europe. The report states higher job control, more learning and development opportunities, greater job clarity and stronger social support from work colleagues improved psychosocial work environments. 
  • Healthy Work - Managing Stress and Fatigue in the Workplace -  a 2003 guide from the New Zealand Government's Occupational Health and Safety Service. Also on this page is a link to other publications on stress and fatigue.
  • Nurse Stress Management Booklet, from the NSW Nurses and Midwives Association with NSW Health.The 2006 booklet is an acknowledgement that despite the union's work towards achieving improvements in nurses' employment conditions, 'it remains a fact of life for nurses that we will frequently encounter at situations at work that are physically and emotionally demanding.'
  • From the World Health Organisation: Protecting Workers' Health Series No. 6 - Raising awareness of stress at work in developing countries: A modern hazard in a traditional working environment. Advice to employer and worker representatives or full-text, 48 pages [pdf]
  • From UK Unions representing workers in education: guidance designed to remedy work-related mental health problems in the sector. The unions' guide aims to provide head teachers with valuable information, both on how to prevent the development of mental health conditions and on how to support staff who do fall ill. It outlines the nature of the problem, the Health and Safety Executive's (HSE) stress management standards as a tool for stress reduction and what to do when a member of staff develops a mental health condition. NUT  union guide, Preventing work-related mental health conditions by tackling stress: Guidance for head teachers - Download from this page.

Last amended September 2016

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