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Newsquest stress survey 'worrying'

5 November 2008

Newsquest must consider the health and safety implications of stress at work, the NUJ has warned.

The union’s general secretary, Jeremy Dear, says preliminary results from the union’s survey of stress in Newsquest newsrooms are worrying.

Jeremy Dear explained:

“We’ve been asking members in Newsquest to complete a questionnaire that aims to assess the level of stress they face at work. Even just a quick glance over the results so far indicates the company’s journalists are facing big pressures.
“Frankly, it looks like the survey is going to show a worrying reflection of the modern newsroom. With fewer journalists around to do the work – and employers expecting staff to undertake more tasks than ever – it’s no wonder that people are getting stressed.
“We’ll be looking carefully at the results to see whether any hotspots can be identified where problems are particularly severe. We’ll also use the overall data to demonstrate to managers that action must be taken to cut back on the stress levels affecting our members.
“This isn’t just about the union trying to protect our members’ jobs. The cutbacks our industry has experienced during the past few years are taking their toll on our members’ health.
"It’s time employers took responsibility for the safety of their workers and end the intolerable pressures they are placing on journalists.”

The survey is scheduled to close on Friday.

Tags: , newsquest, stress, surveys, newspapers, cuts