Bullying and Young Members

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2016 National Delegate Conference
25 February 2016
Carried as Amended

Conference notes with great concern the high number of our young members experiencing bullying and harassment within workplaces. In a recent survey conducted by the Scottish Young Members Committee it was found that 75% of our young members had experienced bullying and harassment of some variety. 7% of the 75% had experienced violence in the workplace.

Conference also notes that over 50% of these cases were not reported. The most common answer why was that our members did not know what was classed as bullying and harassment. Where cases were reported only 5% received any support.

The health implications for our young members experiencing bullying and harassment are wholly negative. They include mental health issues such as anxiety, stress, and depression as well as physical problems such as headaches, stomach and skin conditions. These lead to periods of long term sick and a number of our young members have even contemplated or attempted suicide.

The Scottish young members committee therefore recently launched their bullying and harassment campaign ‘Gonnae No Dae That’ and produced a guide for young workers to raise awareness of the issues and provide details of how UNISON can help and support them.

Our young members are just starting out in their career. They should be positive about their future and supported in the workplace. However in the midst of unprecedented cuts the likelihood of bullying of our young members is set to continue.

Conference therefore welcomes the awareness campaign by the Scottish young members committee and calls on the National Executive Council to support branches, regions and young members committees across the UK to develop materials to aid the recruitment of young workers and to highlight the support that UNISON can offer to those young people who are bullied in the workplace.