INDEPENDENT NEWS

Helpline Launched For Workplace Bullying

Published: Tue 16 Sep 2003 10:19 AM
Helpline Launched For Workplace Bullying
(Please reinforce the numbers of this phone line as opposed the words which can be confusing to the public)
A national helpline 0800 ZERO BULLY (0800 937628) was launched today to address the growing problem of workplace bullying in New Zealand.
Workplace bullying is estimated to affect half of our working population and to cost the New Zealand economy millions of dollars each year in losses from absenteeism, high staff turnover and reduced staff performance.
“Bullying is an insidious part of many New Zealand businesses, often disguised as strong and determined leadership. However, it has a very detrimental impact on the person being targeted and to those in close proximity” says Anne Tucker, Managing Director of organisational development business, Stratos, and sponsor of the 0800 ZERO BULLY helpline.
“We know the issue exists in New Zealand, that it creates a lot of stress and that it has a large impact on employee performance, health and productivity. Ignoring it is not the answer.”
Under the recent amendment to the Health & Safety in Employment Act (1992), employers are required to identify the significant health and safety hazards that exist in their organisation and put in place procedures for dealing with them. Workplace bullying is one such hazard.
In response to increased concern from employers about workplace stress generally, Stratos developed The Health and Resilience Programme in conjunction with ANZ Bank, an organisation that has a strong policy of dealing with workplace stress. The Programme assists organisations identify stress factors in the workplace and put in place systems and procedures to deal with them.
This unique online programme comprises; a computerised plan for managing stress related issues in the workplace a computerised resource kit for employees to assess their health and resilience with practical steps for solutions.
A national team of consultants are available to work with organisations on specific stress related issues, to train managers, health and safety representatives and employees so they can identify the issues and find workable solutions.
Providing organisations with additional comfort, the programme also negotiates organisations around the relevant elements of the Health & Safety in Employment Act (1992).
0800 ZERO BULLY was launched today throughout New Zealand and offers information and advice to targets of workplace bullying, the bullies themselves and to organisations seeking to provide bully-free workplace environments.

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