Sommes-nous en train de nous tuer à la tâche ?

Le travail peut structurer la vie et lui donner un sens. Mais les conditions de travail peuvent également déclencher ou accélérer les symptômes d'une mauvaise santé, tant physique que mentale, qui s'insinuent dans notre productivité et notre capacité à gagner notre vie, ainsi que dans nos relations sociales et familiales. En fait, un nombre grandissant d'employés semblent, de manière alarmante, vulnérables.

Sur les 160 millions d'employés de constitution robuste dans l'Union Européenne, 56 % déclarent travailler à une cadence très soutenue et 60 % selon des délais très serrés. Plus d'un tiers d'entre eux reconnaissent n'avoir aucune influence sur l'ordre des tâches et 40 % effectuent des tâches monotones. Il est probable que cette situation engendre toute une série de problèmes liés à la santé : 15 % des effectifs se plaignent de maux de tête, 33 % de maux de dos, 23 % de fatigue et 23 % de douleurs cervicales et de douleurs à l'épaule, ainsi que de plusieurs autres maladies, notamment des maladies affectant le processus vital.

La tension nerveuse prolongée liée au travail joue également un rôle essentiel dans la survenue de troubles dépressifs, la quatrième cause la plus importante de maladie dans le monde. Ces troubles devraient occuper la deuxième place d'ici 2020, derrière les maladies cardiaques. Dans l'Union Européenne, le coût de ces troubles dépressifs et des problèmes liés à la santé mentale atteindrait en moyenne 3 à 4 % du PNB, soit environ 265 milliards d'euros par an.

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