Did you know that bullying within the workplace is actually a lot more common than you would think?
A survey carried out on 2,000 UK based employees revealed that 23% of the British workforce has been bullied at work, 25% have been made to feel left out in the workplace and 12% admitted to struggling to make friends in their place of work.
There can be many reasons someone may feel they are being bullied or mistreated at work, including the following:
- Less qualified workers often envy skilled workers; some colleagues may see others as a threat as they do not have the same level of skills, and they may use this as a reason to act differently towards that colleague.
- Well-liked employees are mistreated; this is all down to popularity. If someone feels that they are not as valued or their popularity is threatened then they may take it out on more ‘popular’ colleagues.
- Bullying due to prejudices; this could be down to age, race, gender, sexuality, disability, religion etc. There are, of course, numerous laws in place to protect employees from such discrimination and all employers have a responsibility to prevent discrimination in the workplace.
These are just a handful of reasons why people may feel that they are being bullied or treated badly in the workplace, but at what point can this become an issue that starts to affect your mental health? At what point does it all become too much to the extent that you need to seek medical help?
Unfortunately, many people do ultimately have to seek help from their GP as a result of mistreatment in the workplace, which lead to a diagnosis of anxiety or depression.
As soon as you feel you may be a victim of bullying or harassment in the work place, you should raise the issue immediately with a manager or HR in order for them to try to rectify the situation. If you feel that you have reached a point where nothing is being done and the strain on your mental health is too much then you may be able to take action against your employer, particularly if your employer had been aware that you were vulnerable to developing mental health issues and did nothing to protect you.
Our personal injury team deal with claims arising from stress and mistreatment in the workplace, alongside our employment team. If you feel that you are being bullied at work and it has resulted in issues with your mental health then please do not hesitate to contact one of new business advisors who will be able to advise the best step for you to take from here. Call our team on 0161 696 6235 or complete our online enquiry form.
By Rachel Gildart, new business advisor on the personal injury team