Received from: TUC Young Workers' Conference
Congress notes the impact of the Covid pandemic on the mental health of young workers.
Congress further notes that a recent YouGov survey found that young people and women had taken the hardest financial and psychological hit from the pandemic. Half of those aged between 18 and 24 years’ old in the UK say the pandemic badly affected their mental health, against a quarter of those over 55. Lockdown restrictions isolated many young workers who were unable to access their usual support networks.
The pandemic had a disproportionate impact on sectors such as retail which were reliant on young workers. The resultant job and financial insecurity triggered poor mental health in young workers at a time they need to re-navigate their lives and careers. Although some employers have taken steps to address health and wellbeing concerns, the uncertainty of the future, coupled with the ongoing cost-of-living crisis, is having a negative impact on the mental wellbeing of our young workers.
Congress believes there is now a mental health crisis amongst young workers.
Congress calls on the General Council to:
i. campaign to strengthen employment rights from day one for young workers, including increasing the amount of statutory sick pay to reflect an individual’s normal earnings
ii. call on employers to assess the impact their policies, practices and procedures (including pay and conditions) have on workers’ mental health and act upon the findings
iii. campaign for better investment in mental health services, including providing young workers with the tools and skills to manage good mental health.
TUC Young Workers Conference