POLITICS & INSTITUTIONS - ECONOMY

Workplace bullying cost economy €150m



Mobbing asbl opened 144 new investigations into workplace bullying or harassment in 2016, up from 133 the year before Pexels

Mobbing asbl opened 144 new investigations into workplace bullying or harassment in 2016, up from 133 the year before Pexels

Bullying in the workplace, or “mobbing”, cost the Luxembourg economy an estimated €150 million in 2016, the latest figures from victims’ support service mobbing asbl reported.

Mobbing asbl opened 144 new investigations into workplace bullying or harassment in 2016, up from 133 the year before.

Of those who sought help with the agency, 55% said they went on sick leave after their first meeting with the asbl’s advisors and the average sick leave of clients lasted 50.9 days.

Mobbing asbl estimated that 9% of the country’s 430,000-strong workforce suffers mobbing, suggesting the victims it has contact with are the tip of the iceberg. It calculated that if 55% of all victims took sick leave for 50.9 days, it would have cost an estimated €150 million to the Luxembourg economy in 2016, up from €102.5 million in 2015.

In 2016, the organisation closed 22 cases, down from 31 in 2015. The annual summary noted that among its clients, 44 reported having suicidal thoughts and seven attempted suicide. In 2015 it reported zero suicide attempts but the number of clients who said they were experiencing suicidal thoughts was higher, at 55.

In 2016, mobbing was most commonly reported in the health and social sector (14% of cases), followed by banking and insurance (12%), sales (10%) and other sectors (10%). In 2015, the highest proportion of cases was reported in other roles (19%), followed by sales (16%), while health and social services, transport and real estate accounted for 8% of cases respectively.

Mobbing was considerably more likely to occur in the private sector, the report suggests, with 84% of victims working in this sector. Meanwhile, workers with no qualifications were the most likely to be victims (35%) ,followed by graduates (26%) and workers with no higher education (25%).

Abuse of power was indicated as the cause in over a quarter of cases (28%), followed by others (25%) and working conditions (24%).