26 Jul 2012
The average Scottish Government employee is off work sick more than six days a year, it has been revealed.
Despite the average sickness rate across the private sector being only 4.5 days per year, the rate within the Scottish Government is significantly higher at 6.3 days.
It comes days after the Scottish Conservatives revealed that absence rates in April for the Scottish Ambulance Service were above seven per cent, even though a deal to reduce working hours had been agreed only months before.
The statistics have emerged following a parliamentary question by the Scottish Conservatives, who have called on the SNP to work harder to bring the figures closer to the overall labour market average.
Scottish Conservative MSP Mary Scanlon said:
“People working in the private arena look in at the public sector and already feel the conditions and holiday allocation are superior.
“When they discover the sickness rate is almost 50 per cent higher, that will only increase the resentment.
“More support has to be made available for those who are long-term sick to help and encourage them back into work.
“Most people who are absent want to be back in the workplace to aid their recovery, and the Scottish Government has to be a leader and a trendsetter when it comes to making that happen.
“For the small minorities who do take liberties, more decisive action has to be taken, because our economy simply cannot afford it.”