Taking more days off for job stress

Millions of Australian employees believe their workplace is mentally unhealthy and are taking more sick days because of job stress.

A study conducted by mental health organisation Beyondblue found 50 per cent of employees thought their workplace was mentally unhealthy and were three times more likely than other workers to take sick days because of mental health problems. 

The research also found that mental illness carries a stigma in many workplaces and that one in five workers had taken time off in the past year because they had felt mentally unwell.

Queensland had the lowest proportion of workers who said their workplace was mentally healthy, while those in Western Australia, particularly construction workers, had the highest. 

A campaign called Heads Up, funded by the Department of Health, was launched last month to encourage business leaders to take action on mental health and give it the same priority as physical health and safety.

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