The joint occupational safety and health strategy GDA, launched by the German government, the Länder and the injury insurance organizations, aims at three goals to be achieved by 2018, including the goal of better protecting workers from psychological stress at work.
In this framework, a new programme, entitled Psyche Reducing stress and developing potential, was launched in 2015. The aim is that the operators should be fully informed and qualified, including business owners, managers, employee representatives and health and safety managers. For example, the inspection officers in the federal states were trained on the issue of psychological stress in a work environment, then they visited plants to study stress at work.
Throughout 2015, stress, psychological pressure and the influence of changes in work environments on workplace health were discussed at length. In addition, two studies were produced:
- One, by the ver.di trade union, showed that workers have felt more stressed in recent years; 42% of the persons surveyed said that they fully agreed with this assertion, and 28% generally agreed.
- The other, by the Max Planck Institute, on behalf of the Bavarian employers’ federations of the metallurgical, electrical and electronic industries, showed that the increase in the number of sick leaves for mental health problems such as depression was related more to personal reasons than to professional reasons.