Legal Responsibilities of Managers in Plain English
This chapter will help managers (and those who advise them) to think in terms of their legal responsibilities when dealing with employee stress issues. It sets out how the “duty of care” and the UK Health and Safety Executive (HSE) Management Standards for Tackling Work-Related Stress (see Chapter 10) apply to them, and what specific actions they should be taking. All managers should try to safeguard the health of their teams from the effects of stress, regardless of whether the organization has stress policies or procedures. An important point for managers to remember is this: it does not matter if managers are under pressure themselves, if they believe a team member ought to be able to withstand a certain pressure, or even whether they believe stress exists or not. The law may determine that they have acted inadequately, or negligently, in a case of stress-related illness. So it is important that they ensure they take a number of steps on a regular basis and avoid a number of pitfalls.
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