Young workers, burnout, and mentally healthly workplaces

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2021 National Young Members' Conference
12 August 2021
Carried as Amended

Conference notes that even before the pandemic mental health and stress at work were among the leading issues raised by young workers.

Conference notes that the pandemic has only exacerbated young workers’ concerns about mental health, whether that is due to working in stressful conditions on the front line, or due to isolation from friends, family and support networks.

Conference notes the November 2020 report by The National Centre for Social Research (NatCen) which linked mental health problems with insecure work contracts, and the following report in July 2021 which identified higher levels of mental distress to working from home during the pandemic.

Conference believes that mental health is a workplace issue which must be addressed by trade unions in negotiations with employers and by direct support for affected workers.

Conference asks the National Young Members’ Forum (NYMF) to:

1.Develop a campaign around the issues of stress, mental health, burnout, and mentally healthy workplaces, and for the ‘right to switch off’;

2.Survey young workers on their experiences during the pandemic;

3.Promote UNISON’s updated mental health bargaining advice to young workers;

4.Promote the support offered by There For You more widely to young members;

5.Work with Regional Young Members’ Forums to share successes in campaigning around mental health issues and to promote UNISON’s work on mental health to young members.