Publication - FOI/EIR release

Scottish Government employee sickness related to mental health: FOI release

Information request and response under the Freedom of Information (Scotland) Act 2002

Published:
21 Feb 2020
Scottish Government employee sickness related to mental health: FOI release
FOI reference: FOI/202000013978
Date received: 28 Jan 2020
Date responded: 20 Feb 2020
Information requested

In your request you asked for the following:

  • In each of the past five years, how many Scottish Civil Service employees have been absent from work due to mental health related conditions. Please also indicate what proportion of the total workforce this constituted in each year.

  • Of those absent from work, how many were on long-term sick leave in each year and what was the longest period of absence in each year?

Response

In your request, you have asked for information about Scottish Civil Service employees. Our response covers permanent staff employed in the core directorates within the Scottish Government (see Annex A for details).  If you wish to obtain information about employees from other Civil Service organisations, you will need to contact those organisations directly.

You have asked for information about employees who have been absent from work due to mental health related conditions.  As an employer, supporting employees to have good mental health is a key part of the Scottish Government’s People Strategy and wellbeing offer.  The Scottish Government, therefore, provides a range of measures both to help staff maintain good mental wellbeing and to provide support during periods of mental ill-health.  Measures include a network of trained, in-house mental health first aiders and access to confidential support and advice through an Employee Assistance Programme.

The information you have requested about absence levels is shown at Annex B.

ANNEX A

Core Directorates of the Scottish Government:

  • Director-General Constitution and External Affairs

  • Director-General Economy

  • Director-General Education, Communities and Justice

  • Director-General Health and Social Care

  • Director-General Organisational Development and Operations

  • Director-General Scottish Exchequer

ANNEX B
Table 1. Directly employed SG Core staff sickness information for mental health related conditions(1) covering each year period for the last 5 years.

Year Period

Headcount of staff off with at least one spell of absence for a mental health related condition.

Proportion of staff(2) off with at least one spell of absence for a mental health related condition.

Headcount of staff with at least one spell of long term absence for a mental health related condition.

Maximum length of a long term spell of absence for a mental health related condition.

Jan 2019 to Dec 2019

611

8.2%

185

224.6

Jan 2018 to Dec 2018

468

7.0%

137

194.2

Jan 2017 to Dec 2017

403

6.7%

109

223.8

Jan 2016 to Dec 2016

363

6.5%

112

174.87

Jan 2015 to Dec 2015

274

4.9%

91

186.84

(1). This includes Depression, Anxiety, Emotional upset, Stress and Stress - Work Related, Psychological condition.

(2). This is as a proportion of all staff present during the year period including those that have left.

About FOI

The Scottish Government is committed to publishing all information released in response to Freedom of Information requests. View all FOI responses at http://www.gov.scot/foi-responses.

Contact

Please quote the FOI reference
Central Enquiry Unit
Email: ceu@gov.scot
Phone: 0300 244 4000

The Scottish Government
St Andrews House
Regent Road
Edinburgh
EH1 3DG