Southend Council staff taking less time off due to illness and stress - despite job fears

Southend Council staff taking less time off due to illness and stress - despite job fears

Southend Council staff taking less time off due to illness and stress - despite job fears

First published in News

SOUTHEND Council staff are taking less time off because of illness and stress – despite worries about job cuts.

The Unison union, which represents about half the Civic Centre’s 1,600 staff, has claimed job cuts there have been putting workers under so much pressure, some have collapsed at work.

The council plans to lose the equivalent of more than 40 fulltime posts as part of £7.3million of spending cuts.

However, the latest council figures suggest the council has lost fewer days in the past year through staff sickness and stress.

Officials say they expect the average worker will have taken six days sick in the year ending on March 31. The average in 2012/13 was 7.85 days.

The national average is 8.7 sick days a year in the public sector and 7.2 in the private sector. The number of days specifically lost because of stress also reduced, significantly.

Joanna Ruffle, who heads the council’s personnel team, said: “Sickness levels across the council continue to fall.

“The health, safety and wellbeing of our staff is very important to us and we are continually looking at newways to support staff and to help them to live healthier lives.”

The job cuts are part of a programme which saw the equivalent of 80 full-time posts cut in the current year and the 120 in 2012-13.

Unison branch secretary Claire Wormald said the council’s tougher new sickness policy – brought in with the union’s help – had reduced absences. However, she warned the policy could be pressuring staff to come to work when they were ill.

She said: “From our members’ point of view, the general feeling is it means a lot of people remain in work when, possibly, they shouldn’t be there. I’m not saying the council hasn’t worked to help this problem.

“Absences may have reduced, but in many cases, people no longer feel they can take time off.”

Comments (22)

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1:12pm Fri 7 Feb 14

RochfordRob says...

Looks like the council have done their homework. 1600 staff all take 6 days sick a year that's 9600 days - equivalent to 39 people they know they can and more importantly, DO manage without.
Looks like the council have done their homework. 1600 staff all take 6 days sick a year that's 9600 days - equivalent to 39 people they know they can and more importantly, DO manage without. RochfordRob
  • Score: 1

1:33pm Fri 7 Feb 14

Nebs says...

1600 staff.
If they each work for the council for 40 years,
that means on average 40 will retire each year.
No need for redundancy payments, let natural retirements deal with the surplus.
1600 staff. If they each work for the council for 40 years, that means on average 40 will retire each year. No need for redundancy payments, let natural retirements deal with the surplus. Nebs
  • Score: 0

1:35pm Fri 7 Feb 14

rayleigh123 says...

The Unison rep says - the civic centre employs 1,600 people - assuming people like dustman - gardeners etc work outside.

HOW MANY PEOPLE DOES SBC EMPLOY ?????

..
The Unison rep says - the civic centre employs 1,600 people - assuming people like dustman - gardeners etc work outside. HOW MANY PEOPLE DOES SBC EMPLOY ????? .. rayleigh123
  • Score: 4

1:35pm Fri 7 Feb 14

w-jback says...

Amazing how well everyone becomes when they are being targeted for redundancy.
Amazing how well everyone becomes when they are being targeted for redundancy. w-jback
  • Score: 12

1:40pm Fri 7 Feb 14

RochfordRob says...

rayleigh123 wrote:
The Unison rep says - the civic centre employs 1,600 people - assuming people like dustman - gardeners etc work outside.

HOW MANY PEOPLE DOES SBC EMPLOY ?????

..
Too many.
[quote][p][bold]rayleigh123[/bold] wrote: The Unison rep says - the civic centre employs 1,600 people - assuming people like dustman - gardeners etc work outside. HOW MANY PEOPLE DOES SBC EMPLOY ????? ..[/p][/quote]Too many. RochfordRob
  • Score: 3

1:52pm Fri 7 Feb 14

Bernard Fatsack says...

My employer doesn't even pay sick at the moment, holiday or unpaid or struggle to work those are my choices.
My employer doesn't even pay sick at the moment, holiday or unpaid or struggle to work those are my choices. Bernard Fatsack
  • Score: 3

2:09pm Fri 7 Feb 14

profondo asbo says...

haha classic. cometh the axe, cometh the better get my backside into work..
haha classic. cometh the axe, cometh the better get my backside into work.. profondo asbo
  • Score: 1

2:12pm Fri 7 Feb 14

w-jback says...

RochfordRob wrote:
rayleigh123 wrote:
The Unison rep says - the civic centre employs 1,600 people - assuming people like dustman - gardeners etc work outside.

HOW MANY PEOPLE DOES SBC EMPLOY ?????

..
Too many.
From the SBC Website
Employee Benefits
About Employee Benefits

With over 4000 employees, Southend-on-Sea Borough Council is a major employer in Southend and we recognise that our staff are our main asset. Without suitably trained and supported employees our vision and ambitions are not achievable.
[quote][p][bold]RochfordRob[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]rayleigh123[/bold] wrote: The Unison rep says - the civic centre employs 1,600 people - assuming people like dustman - gardeners etc work outside. HOW MANY PEOPLE DOES SBC EMPLOY ????? ..[/p][/quote]Too many.[/p][/quote]From the SBC Website Employee Benefits About Employee Benefits With over 4000 employees, Southend-on-Sea Borough Council is a major employer in Southend and we recognise that our staff are our main asset. Without suitably trained and supported employees our vision and ambitions are not achievable. w-jback
  • Score: 1

2:18pm Fri 7 Feb 14

Leighdweller says...

Perhaps the headline would better read "Public sector slackers do the job they are paid to do"
Perhaps the headline would better read "Public sector slackers do the job they are paid to do" Leighdweller
  • Score: 7

3:12pm Fri 7 Feb 14

rude boy says...

Get rid of half the supervisors and managers all they seem to do is walk around together holding hands. And should appreciate the staff they have got. But power goes to people's heads
Get rid of half the supervisors and managers all they seem to do is walk around together holding hands. And should appreciate the staff they have got. But power goes to people's heads rude boy
  • Score: 5

4:12pm Fri 7 Feb 14

ThisYear says...

profondo asbo wrote:
haha classic. cometh the axe, cometh the better get my backside into work..
brother can you spare a sick note.
[quote][p][bold]profondo asbo[/bold] wrote: haha classic. cometh the axe, cometh the better get my backside into work..[/p][/quote]brother can you spare a sick note. ThisYear
  • Score: 0

4:13pm Fri 7 Feb 14

ThisYear says...

*Southend Council staff taking less time off due to illness and stress - despite (Because of?) job fears*
*Southend Council staff taking less time off due to illness and stress - despite (Because of?) job fears* ThisYear
  • Score: 5

4:34pm Fri 7 Feb 14

leigh-my-town says...

SBC are a load of oxygen robbing bustards. Good for nothing time consuming people who get paid for delivering sweet fuuuuk all. Shoddy SLA when dealing with residents, ill mannered, and totally unreliable unless your lining their pockets with one of their fees.
SBC are a load of oxygen robbing bustards. Good for nothing time consuming people who get paid for delivering sweet fuuuuk all. Shoddy SLA when dealing with residents, ill mannered, and totally unreliable unless your lining their pockets with one of their fees. leigh-my-town
  • Score: 2

5:30pm Fri 7 Feb 14

You'dfeelbetterforknowingthat says...

leigh-my-town wrote:
SBC are a load of oxygen robbing bustards. Good for nothing time consuming people who get paid for delivering sweet fuuuuk all. Shoddy SLA when dealing with residents, ill mannered, and totally unreliable unless your lining their pockets with one of their fees.
Too Right, only a shame they are only collapsing because that means They'll be back, complete and utter waste of space, which we all pay for, whilst they PLAY with our and our loved ones lives, no sympathy, real job dodgers, plays their emotional card, F#ck off, this is about cuts, all over, now this lot are shocked, why? it's affecting THEM.
[quote][p][bold]leigh-my-town[/bold] wrote: SBC are a load of oxygen robbing bustards. Good for nothing time consuming people who get paid for delivering sweet fuuuuk all. Shoddy SLA when dealing with residents, ill mannered, and totally unreliable unless your lining their pockets with one of their fees.[/p][/quote]Too Right, only a shame they are only collapsing because that means They'll be back, complete and utter waste of space, which we all pay for, whilst they PLAY with our and our loved ones lives, no sympathy, real job dodgers, plays their emotional card, F#ck off, this is about cuts, all over, now this lot are shocked, why? it's affecting THEM. You'dfeelbetterforknowingthat
  • Score: 10

6:00pm Fri 7 Feb 14

Devils Advocate says...

Oh well, back under the Tories again. How many years did it take them this time to get everybody that works hard for a living "Blaming it all" on everybody that works hard for a living. The Serf-masters don't need a whip, they have workers to whip workers for nothing. If you look at the "Average sick" days that always includes people who are lang term sick such as those who have suffered injury through the firms poor safety standards etc. etc. but, as you all work harder than anybody else, and none of you lot here ever go sick, then of course you are ready to hang anyone else that might have a little poorer health than you. Typical modern Englishman, knows the price of everything and the value of nothing!" Your turn is coming!
Oh well, back under the Tories again. How many years did it take them this time to get everybody that works hard for a living "Blaming it all" on everybody that works hard for a living. The Serf-masters don't need a whip, they have workers to whip workers for nothing. If you look at the "Average sick" days that always includes people who are lang term sick such as those who have suffered injury through the firms poor safety standards etc. etc. but, as you all work harder than anybody else, and none of you lot here ever go sick, then of course you are ready to hang anyone else that might have a little poorer health than you. Typical modern Englishman, knows the price of everything and the value of nothing!" Your turn is coming! Devils Advocate
  • Score: 1

6:47pm Fri 7 Feb 14

profondo asbo says...

Devils Advocate wrote:
Oh well, back under the Tories again. How many years did it take them this time to get everybody that works hard for a living "Blaming it all" on everybody that works hard for a living. The Serf-masters don't need a whip, they have workers to whip workers for nothing. If you look at the "Average sick" days that always includes people who are lang term sick such as those who have suffered injury through the firms poor safety standards etc. etc. but, as you all work harder than anybody else, and none of you lot here ever go sick, then of course you are ready to hang anyone else that might have a little poorer health than you. Typical modern Englishman, knows the price of everything and the value of nothing!" Your turn is coming!
got smelling salts?
[quote][p][bold]Devils Advocate[/bold] wrote: Oh well, back under the Tories again. How many years did it take them this time to get everybody that works hard for a living "Blaming it all" on everybody that works hard for a living. The Serf-masters don't need a whip, they have workers to whip workers for nothing. If you look at the "Average sick" days that always includes people who are lang term sick such as those who have suffered injury through the firms poor safety standards etc. etc. but, as you all work harder than anybody else, and none of you lot here ever go sick, then of course you are ready to hang anyone else that might have a little poorer health than you. Typical modern Englishman, knows the price of everything and the value of nothing!" Your turn is coming![/p][/quote]got smelling salts? profondo asbo
  • Score: 1

7:36pm Fri 7 Feb 14

GrumpyofLeigh says...

"Staff are our main asset" - main cost more like.
"Staff are our main asset" - main cost more like. GrumpyofLeigh
  • Score: 3

9:20am Sat 8 Feb 14

RochfordRob says...

" those who have suffered injury through the firms poor safety standards"

I agree, it must be dangerous sitting behind a desk all day at the Civic Centre.
" those who have suffered injury through the firms poor safety standards" I agree, it must be dangerous sitting behind a desk all day at the Civic Centre. RochfordRob
  • Score: 3

1:58pm Sat 8 Feb 14

ThisYear says...

RochfordRob wrote:
" those who have suffered injury through the firms poor safety standards"

I agree, it must be dangerous sitting behind a desk all day at the Civic Centre.
I suppose framing people is much more dangerous!.
[quote][p][bold]RochfordRob[/bold] wrote: " those who have suffered injury through the firms poor safety standards" I agree, it must be dangerous sitting behind a desk all day at the Civic Centre.[/p][/quote]I suppose framing people is much more dangerous!. ThisYear
  • Score: 2

6:05pm Sat 8 Feb 14

Howard Cháse says...

RochfordRob wrote:
" those who have suffered injury through the firms poor safety standards"

I agree, it must be dangerous sitting behind a desk all day at the Civic Centre.
Those paper cuts can sting quite a bit you know...
[quote][p][bold]RochfordRob[/bold] wrote: " those who have suffered injury through the firms poor safety standards" I agree, it must be dangerous sitting behind a desk all day at the Civic Centre.[/p][/quote]Those paper cuts can sting quite a bit you know... Howard Cháse
  • Score: 2

3:44pm Mon 10 Feb 14

RochfordRob says...

ThisYear wrote:
RochfordRob wrote: " those who have suffered injury through the firms poor safety standards" I agree, it must be dangerous sitting behind a desk all day at the Civic Centre.
I suppose framing people is much more dangerous!.
I have no idea but I do know your comment is bordering on libellous.

I'd tread carefully if I were you.
[quote][p][bold]ThisYear[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]RochfordRob[/bold] wrote: " those who have suffered injury through the firms poor safety standards" I agree, it must be dangerous sitting behind a desk all day at the Civic Centre.[/p][/quote]I suppose framing people is much more dangerous!.[/p][/quote]I have no idea but I do know your comment is bordering on libellous. I'd tread carefully if I were you. RochfordRob
  • Score: -1

8:46pm Mon 10 Feb 14

ThisYear says...

RochfordRob wrote:
ThisYear wrote:
RochfordRob wrote: " those who have suffered injury through the firms poor safety standards" I agree, it must be dangerous sitting behind a desk all day at the Civic Centre.
I suppose framing people is much more dangerous!.
I have no idea but I do know your comment is bordering on libellous.

I'd tread carefully if I were you.
I make no reference to any particular council or council worker...therefore how that could be bordering on being libellous escapes me...

I of course do have experience of framing by a council...do you?

If not why are you advising on something you nothing about?
[quote][p][bold]RochfordRob[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]ThisYear[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]RochfordRob[/bold] wrote: " those who have suffered injury through the firms poor safety standards" I agree, it must be dangerous sitting behind a desk all day at the Civic Centre.[/p][/quote]I suppose framing people is much more dangerous!.[/p][/quote]I have no idea but I do know your comment is bordering on libellous. I'd tread carefully if I were you.[/p][/quote]I make no reference to any particular council or council worker...therefore how that could be bordering on being libellous escapes me... I of course do have experience of framing by a council...do you? If not why are you advising on something you nothing about? ThisYear
  • Score: 1

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