Portsmouth Hospitals NHS Trust
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Bullying Harassment Health

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Physical and mental health

 Bullying and harassment undermines physical and mental health, frequently resulting in stress and subsequent poor work performance. For some people, it is so bad they decide to leave their job.  Other possible consequences include:

  • sleeplessness
  • loss of confidence
  • depression, anxiety or low self-esteem
  • loss of appetite
  • self-doubt
  • hypervigilence
  • excessive double-checking of all actions
  • inability to relax
  • inability to switch off from work

A workplace where everyone is respected and valued and complaints of bullying are properly managed will undoubtedly be a more productive one.  Employers have a duty of care to provide a safe and healthy working environment, whilst employees also have a responsibility to ensure their behaviour does not distress colleagues.

In line with this approach, there are several options available to enable employees to be supported.  This support will be provided not only to complainants, but to alleged perpetrators and any witnesses.

Respect Me confidential support line    Manned by impartial Staff Side representatives, this helpline offers guidance and support.  Respect.me@porthosp.nhs.uk or leave a message on 02392 286000 ext. 4321

Counselling Service (Aquilis)    Provide a free, confidential and impartial counselling service for all employees.  All counsellors are self-employed, independent, appropriately qualified and members of the British Association for Counselling and Psychotherapy.  The counselling service can be contacted on 02392 283636, a confidential voicemail number.

Occupational Health, Safety and Wellbeing Service     Any member of staff who is involved in a claim of bullying or harassment may find it helpful to talk to the Occupational Health and Safety Service.  They can be contacted on (023) 92 283352.

Trade Union and Staff Side Representatives    The Trust recognizes the important role such representatives play in addressing bullying and harassment and employees are encouraged to approach their representative regarding their concerns.  The Trust will work in conjunction with Trade Union and staff side representatives in addressing unacceptable and inappropriate behaviours.  Email respect.me@porthosp.nhs.uk or call 02392 286000 ext. 4321.

Case Study

Sarah, is being constantly criticised for every thing her new manager can find. Completed work was returned time and again despite the fact that Sarah had started running it past other more experienced work colleagues. Sarah’s son became ill at the same time as she had been asked in vague terms for a report on the work she had been doing over the past year. In the emergency, and in the absence of her manager, Sarah handed in the report early explaining that she would willingly expand on it if her manager was not satisfied with it, along with a note explaining that her son was ill. The next day Linda stormed into Sarah’s office and publicly began shouting at her for doing a lousy job on the report and for taking time off for her son.

Following this incident, the working relationship with her manager became such that Sarah avoided speaking to her and dreaded going into work. Sarah fainted at work and eventually had a breakdown

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Last updated - 30 August 2016
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