Noticeable increase in workplace mental stress claims

Australia’s Comcare agency has identified a “54% increase in mental stress claims” since 2006-2007.  This is of great concern to the agency, which covers the OHS and compensation needs of Australian government agencies and others, as Work Health and Safety General Manager, Neil Quarmby, outlines in a media release on 21 July 2011. Quarmby states “Clearly this trend could … Continue reading “Noticeable increase in workplace mental stress claims”

France Telecome’s CSR report is telling but sets high expectations

In 2009, France Telecom’s management practices came to global attention as a result of a spate of over 20 suicides that were identified as work-related.  On 6 June 2011, France Telecom released its Corporate Responsibility Report that covers the period of the management turmoil touched upon in earlier SafetyAtWorkBlog articles. The document is an impressive … Continue reading “France Telecome’s CSR report is telling but sets high expectations”

Canada begins developing a National Standard for Psychological Health and Safety in the Workplace

Mental health is attracting a huge amount of attention in western countries but much of this has a public health focus.  Workplace mental health is not getting enough attention even though, correctly applied, this collective term could include the occupational hazards of stress, bullying, depression and suicide. Canada has leapt ahead of most countries by … Continue reading “Canada begins developing a National Standard for Psychological Health and Safety in the Workplace”

Brodie Panlock – the catalyst for new bullying/stalking laws

“Brodie’s Law” is gaining considerable attention in the Victorian newspapers in anticipation of the introduction of the Crimes Amendment (Bullying) Bill 2011 in Parliament but it may be unreasonable to label these changes “Brodie’s Law” as, although Brodie Panlock’s suicide and the related court actions were the catalyst for the Bill, the proposed Bill is … Continue reading “Brodie Panlock – the catalyst for new bullying/stalking laws”

Is politics anti-family?

Another Australian politician has resigned to spend more time with his family but this time the family mantra is not tacked on to a struggling career in order to add moral weight to the political decision sadly many examples of dubious resignations are available.  Most commentators believe that the Tasmanian Premier, David Bartlett’s decision is … Continue reading “Is politics anti-family?”

Insurance company “fire-bomber” dies in custody

Almost 12 months ago, Paul Wayne Clarke “loaded a shopping trolley with jerry cans of fuel and set it alight inside a Darwin insurance office, injuring 15 people”.  Clarke died on 21 January 2011 after a failed suicide attempt whilst in custody. On February 2010 media report provided a few details of Clarke’s circumstances: “The … Continue reading “Insurance company “fire-bomber” dies in custody”

Suicide research and cultural change

I often have my “western” assumptions punctured by evidence from the non-western or majority world.  Recently SafetyAtWorkBlog has reported on workplace suicide statistics but a report made available through the World Health Organisation says “Low-income countries in Asia and the Pacific have the highest burden of suicide in the world.   These countries are among the poorest globally, and … Continue reading “Suicide research and cultural change”