Union signs stress agreement with ministry of finance

Estonia

The ROTAL state and local government employees’ union has signed an agreement with the ministry of finance on recommended principles for maintaining mental health in the work environment. The agreement recognises that a large proportion of civil servants are exposed to intellectual and psychological challenges in their daily work, and that maintaining mental health in the work environment is therefore a key occupational safety issue. The agreement will allow for a range of measures to be taken to mitigate psycho-social risk factors such as making work organization and the workplace suitable for the employee, optimizing the workload of the employee, providing breaks, improving information flow, developing cooperation, direct manager support, involvement in decision-making and intolerance of harassment and bullying. In addition, the employer can support the general mental health of employees through health promotion activities, such as organizing joint events, theme days, providing an environment suitable for relaxation and sports, providing the services of a psychologist or counsellor, and enabling flexibility in working hours. The agreement was drawn up on the basis of the 2004 cross-sector European social partners’ agreement on work-related stress.

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