GET A LIFE!
Union tools to ensure your job doesn't take over your life.
Britain Pressure and job insecurity hits a 20-year high
Britain Train drivers concerned over makeshift shrines
Britain NUJ welcomes BBC bullying action plan
Britain Mental health charity bullies its own staff
Britain Work stress led to school head’s suicide
Britain Retailers shopped by exhausted staff
Britain Needlestick injuries cause psychiatric trauma
Britain Emails used as a ‘punitive’ management tool
Britain Prison educators are highly stressed
Britain Schools inspectors are ‘hit men’ for ministers
Britain Burnout bigger heart risk than smoking
to death campaign
To find out more
fortnightly Changing Times
shame Most of us have seen someone
reduced to tears by work stresses. But crying can be just the
start of it. Some workers get so distressed they opt for suicide.
And workplace stress is geting worse. Hazards
101, January-March 2008
Drop dead It's the thoroughly modern way to die at work.
Top occupational diseases of the 21st century will be heart attacks,
suicide and strokes. Hazards argues that none of us should
be worked into the ground.
briefing, Hazards, 5 August 2003
Yeah, you've dealt with the chemicals,
you are waist deep in risks assessments and the health and safety
committee is tackling everything from soft loo roll to hard hats.
And you still feel like a zombie. The Hazards factsheet
says it is time to use our unions to get a life...
78 Get a life! factsheet [PDF]
on welfare at work
HSE online guidance for employers on
welfare provisions at the workplace answers questions on whether
employers should provide toilet and washing facilities (yes),
drinking water (yes), facilities at remote workplaces (maybe)
and temporary workplaces (yes, so far as is reasonably practicable),
arrangement for meals and meal breaks (yes) and rooms for smokers
Risks 273, 9 September 2006 •
welfare at work online guide
ILO work and
Guide to safety, work schedules, shiftwork and long hours
US government safety research body NIOSH has published an online guide
to the health and safety problems related to demanding work schedules,
shiftwork and long working hours. Issues covered include overtime and
extended work shifts, road related risks in overtired workers and shift
patterns. There's also a useful links section, although one enormous omission
is union-related resources - particularly remiss given the message on
many bumper stickers in the US: "Unions: the folks that brought you
the weekend." Worldwide, struggles for a shorter working week were
central to the formation and development of unions.
Risks 198, 12 March 2005
work schedules and safety webpages
USA, Work to live vacation campaign
The Work to Live Campaign "was created to do just that, to bring
some sanity to a workplace out of control. Our goal is to amend
the national labor laws so that our work practices reflect who
we say we are—parents, citizens, and members of communities. You
can't be those things with a 60-hour week and a one-week vacation."
Take back your time day
This US website notes: "On Friday, October 24, 2003, thousands,
perhaps millions, of Americans will JUST SAY NO to the overwork,
over-scheduling and overstress that threaten to overwhelm our
lives. They'll take the day or part of it off work, and join in
hundreds of activities to initiate a much-needed national conversation
about work/life balance and how we can reclaim it."
back your time day
What's Get a life! about?
The Get A Life! campaign
is about a quality of working life - at work and after work. The
Get a Life! campaign is about restoring some work/life balance.
It's about achieiving changes in laws and in collective agreements
to allow workers to Get A Life! ...
Get a life page Background
Train drivers' union Aslef has made its authoritative Shiftwork,
lifestyle and health guide available online. The 32 page guide
is thoroughly referenced and is intended "to assist both
our elected representatives and our members in coping with shiftwork
and the long hours culture in Britain's railways." The guide
is a useful resource for anyone concerned about shiftwork and
long hours, whatever their industry.
131, 8 November 2003
Fight speed up. CAW
"Management is pushing
too hard. As in the past we need to fight speed-up, we need to
fight short staffing and we need to resist excessive hours of
work." Buzz Hargrove, CAW. more
CAW working conditions benchmarking
Members of Canadian auto union CAW
took strike action over "lean and mean" production methods.
The union HQ developed its own "benchmarking" system
on working conditions, something ignored in the company's own
production-oriented system (Hazards 51). more
CAW Work Reorganization:
Responding to Lean Production
The CAW union has always understood
and been committed to an efficient and productive workplace producing
quality goods and providing quality services. But this potential
never was, and is not today, automatic. It is conditional on the
ability of working people, through their unions, negotiating how
these changes are implemented and how they shape our lives. Today,
we face the challenge of "lean production", which represents an
attempt to limit these changes to the needs of management. more
|Changing world of work
European Agency for Safety and Health
at Work resources and information on the changing world of work...
|Work life balance in UNISON
For UNISON work-life balance is a priority, says the UNISON work
life balance website. “It's about working to live, not living
to work. It's about making working time and working practices
more flexible. UNISON believes all workers should have a right
to work that does not damage their freedom to pursue activities
and responsibilities outside the workplace.” The page has practical
advice, rough guides, latest news and sample agreements – and
even a Hemingway quote.
work life balance webpage
Getting the right balance between work time and personal time
is an issue for nearly everyone in work today – so communications
union Connect has created a WORKTIMEyourtime website to help members
make the best of their time. The union says: “Wherever you work
and whatever your contractual position, these are common issues
with common solutions,” including: TOIL (time off in lieu) Frequently
Asked Questions; stress; and raising issues with management.
The government’s Working balance website is packed with information,
from news – including an interview with work-life balance minister
Alan Johnson – and detailed advice on issues from work practices,
to work-life solutions, to health and safety, to equal opps, to
events, to funding sources, to awards, to…. Have a look for yourself.