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Departmental Sick Leave

Volume 472: debated on Thursday 21 February 2008

To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport what percentage of working days lost by his Department’s staff was attributed to stress-related conditions in the most recent year for which figures are available. (187864)

For the 2006-07 financial year, the percentage of working days lost attributed to stress is 13 per cent. of total sickness absence.

The Department for Culture, Media and Sport has a legal obligation to provide a safe working environment for all employees and guidance is available for staff and managers on how to manage stress effectively.

As part of our attendance, health and well being programme for staff we have a range of policies in place to reduce work related stress. These include: Stress Management policy and Sickness Absence policy, which includes guidance on making reasonable adjustments. We also offer a full range of flexible work patterns to support work-life balance and have health awareness pages on our intranet. We have appointed a DCMS board member as the Health and Well-Being Champion. In addition, staff have access to our Employee Assistance Programme (counselling service) and onsite gym with a programme of exercise and yoga available.