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Debt depression ‘sweeping across UK’

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As the country slowly hauls itself out of the recession, businesses and employers are still feeling the effects of a widespread ‘debt depression’, a new survey has found.

Insurer Aviva has found that 23% of businesses claim recent economic difficulties have taken a lasting toll on employee stress levels, leading to an inevitable rise in long-term absence rates.

Aviva’s new Early Intervention Prevention Group risk survey reports that nearly two thirds (61%) of employers feel managing long-term absence is an issue for their business, with one in six (16%) stating that long term sickness can have a devastating effect on team morale.

However, only 6% of staff feel that their company works hard to get staff back into the workplace when colleagues go on sick leave for two weeks or more.

“Stress is extremely hard to tackle as people often mask the symptoms until it’s too late,” said Dr. Doug Wright, Principal Clinical Consultant at Aviva Health UK.

“Individuals can be affected by all manner of problems from personal factors to pressure of work and external issues including economic woes. However, the good news is that early identification and treatment of stress-related conditions is possible and has extremely positive results – helping to safeguard the health of employees and minimising time lost to the business.”

Commenting on the results, the UK’s leading debt charity, Consumer Credit Counselling Service (CCCS), claimed that employee awareness of debt counselling and the availability of debt advice can help soften the burden.

“It is a complex problem that has implications for financial institutions, health organisations, advice bodies as well as employers, who in turn have a responsibility to develop their understanding of the issue,” added CCCS Chairman, Malcolm Hurlston.

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Written by Andrew Hodges

February 13, 2010 at 6:48 pm

Posted in Comment, LinkedIn

Tagged with , ,

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