It would seem that on the face of it that staff are even healthier that ever as they take less and less time off sick …but research shows this is not true. What is true is that in all spheres of work including Domestic and Household staff are continuing to turn up for work when they are genuinely ill. And that is not good news.
It means that staff are not looking after their health properly, and the deep seated reason seems to be fear of losing their job. This is far from a healthy working environment.
We have mentioned this before, and it was expected that the publicity given to the issue would encourage staff who are genuinely sick, to take appropriate steps to safeguard their health.
But recent figures released by the office of national statistics (ONS) showed that employees took an average of 4.1 days off sick in 2017 – almost half the 7.2 days taken in 1993, when records began.
Minor illnesses, such as coughs and colds, accounted for 34.5% of working hours lost in Musculoskeletal problems represented 17.7% of absences, and stress, depression or anxiety were given as the reason for 7.6% of absences.
Musculoskeletal issues were more common among older workers and were behind 20.8% of working time lost by 50-64 year olds and 18.7% of hours lost by 35-49 year olds.
The ONS said there had been an increase in the number of workers aged 25-34 who attributed their absence to mental health conditions. This proportion increased from 7.2% in 2009 to 9.6% in 2017.
The simple message is, if your domestic/household staff turn up for work obviously unwell, discuss with them that taking some time off to recover benefits both sides and reassure them that it will not jeopardise their job.
The Graham Agency, keeping you informed