Exclusive: TfL spent £3m in five years on counselling staff for stress, assault & other issues

Our Freedom of Information request finds

Transport for London (TfL) has spent over £3.1m from 2010 to 2014 counselling staff, a Freedom of Information (FOI) request by LondonlovesBusiness.com has revealed.

Over 4,750 employees received counselling for issues including stress and anxiety, depression, train suicide, anger management and harassment (full list of causes below).

The figures come as London Mayor Boris Johnson has announced closing over 250 ticket offices which will save TfL £50m a year.

Mick Cash, general secretary, National Union of Rail, Maritime and Transport Workers (RMT), said: “These figures are a reflection of the massive pressure that staff find themselves under against a background of cuts to numbers, services and safety.

“They serve as the clearest evidence that staff are bearing the brunt of Boris Johnson’s cash-led attacks across the London Underground network and reinforce the unions determination to fight his plans.”

Finn Brennan, district organiser for the Associated Society of Locomotive Engineers and Firemen (ASLEF), voiced similar concerns.

“The £3m spent on counselling is money that is extremely well spent. TfL employees do a very important yet difficult and stressful job. One of the big worries is the closure of ticket offices which will lead to reduction in staff. This will definitely leave staff more vulnerable,” he said.

What TfL has to say:

In response to the Freedom of Information request, TfL said: “The health and well-being of staff is extremely important for any business but it is paramount for an organisation like Transport for London where more than 11 million journeys take place on the TfL network every day and we need to ensure that both our passengers and 29,000 employees are as safe as possible. Counselling has been found to be a safe and cost effective way of helping staff who suffer from stress, depression and other issues, and in so doing reducing absenteeism and staff turnover.”

According to TfL, the following causes are recorded as reasons for seeking counselling:

Stress and Anxiety

Depression

Assault

Other trauma

Train suicide

Bereavement

Near miss

Relationship / marital

Grievance

Trauma

Multiple trauma

Harassment

Anger management

Medical

Abuse

Eating disorder

Communication and conflict at work

Disciplinary

Employment other

Sickness absence management

Performance at work

Work conditions

Family

Other legal

Consumer, banking and utilities

Health

Family care

Housing

Other

 

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Readers' comments (2)

  • Anonymous

    Brilliant underground sign design concept - I love it
    http://excellentprinting.co.uk

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  • Anonymous

    When I use the underground the staff just stand around doing nothing for most of the time. Why not follow the example of Munich and run the system without staff. We already have driverless trains and removing the staff would save commuters a lot of money leading to lower fares.

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