New research has revealed that toxic workplaces can be hazardous to mental health. The year-long study is from the University of South Australia. Researchers found that full-time workers who work for companies or organizations that do not prioritise employees' mental health are three times more likely to suffer from depression. The researchers examined the adverse effect of "toxic" environments on health. Elements of a toxic workplace included poor management practices, bullying, and a failure to consider mental health issues. The researchers indicated that if employees are unhappy at work, mistreated or burnt out, their productivity will suffer and absenteeism will increase.
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Lead researcher Dr Amy Zadow said mental health issues created in the workplace can be attributed to poor management practices and values. She said: "Evidence shows that companies who fail to reward or acknowledge their employees for hard work, impose unreasonable demands on workers, and do not give them autonomy are placing their staff at a much greater risk of depression." She added: "Bullying in a work unit can not only negatively affect the victim, but also the perpetrator....It is not uncommon for everyone in the same unit to experience burnout as a result." Depression affects over 260 million people worldwide and causes many people to take their own lives.