Unite launches campaign to fight stress in the voluntary sector

Union will survey its 60,000 members in charities to understand how stress affects them

Trade union Unite has launched a campaign that it hopes will "eradicate stress" in the voluntary sector.

The union, which has 60,000 members in the not-for-profit sector, said its research suggested nine out of 10 voluntary sector workers felt their wellbeing was being undermined by the financial problems facing charities.

The first stage of the campaign will be a survey of members by more than 2,500 Unite representatives in the sector.

The union said it hoped the poll would help it understand the situation in the workplace.

It said it also wanted to reinforce the message to employers that they have a legal obligation to manage and prevent workplace stress and draw up some best practice policies covering how to deal with it.

Rachael Maskell, national officer for the not-for-profit sector at Unite, said: "Stress in the workplace is like a modern-day plague - it is virulent and can strike at any time and in any place, and is indiscriminate as to who its victim is.

"The object of the campaign is to give the workplace activists representing our 60,000 members in the not-for-profit sector the tools to take up the issues of stress with management."

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