Labour Research November 2004

Health & Safety Matters

Workplace bullying is on the increase...

A survey by an anti-bullying charity has found that nearly 90% of personnel professionals have witnessed or are aware of bullying in their workplaces, and a third say that the number of incidents has increased in the past two years.

The Andrea Adams Trust, which carried out the survey with magazine Personnel Today, receives up to 70 calls a day. Most come from people working in the NHS, educational institutions and call centres.

The high level of reported bullying came despite 70% of respondents saying that their employer had formal policies in place to tackle workplace bullying.

...especially for ethnic minorities

Workers from ethnic minorities are five times as likely as their white colleagues to experience bullying in the workplace.

Recent research, conducted in south Wales by Andrew Jones of the Valleys Race Equality Council and Dr Duncan Lewis from the University of Glamorgan Business School, found that 25% of ethnic minority workers reported being bullied at work, compared to 5% of white workers.

The study, which involved workers in numerous public and private sector organisations, revealed that members of ethnic minorities suffer a catalogue of bullying behaviours - both from managers and from colleagues in equivalent and lower grades.

Last month, a new bullying hotline for cabin crew and ground staff at Heathrow and Gatwick airports was jammed with calls. According to the skilled and professional union Amicus, 91% of the callers were from ethnic minorities alleging racist behaviour.