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Public Sector: Sick Leave

Cabinet Office written question – answered on 2nd November 2011.

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Photo of Nicholas Soames Nicholas Soames Conservative, Mid Sussex

To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office what steps he is taking to reduce sickness absence in the public sector to the same levels as in the private sector.

Photo of Francis Maude Francis Maude The Paymaster General and Minister for the Cabinet Office

holding answer 27 October 2011

Cabinet Office hosts a regular cross-sector forum for employers which shares best practice on effective ways to reduce sickness absence.

In the civil service, the average working days lost (AWDL) per staff year has fallen for the fifth consecutive quarter. The AWDL per person in the civil service now stands at 7.3 days. This compares to a private sector average of 7.1 days per person according to recent reports by the Chartered Institute of Personnel Development and 5.9 days per person according to the Confederation of British Industry. The figures for the public sector are 9.1 days and 8.1 days respectively.

AWDL in the civil service is currently at its lowest reported figure since 1999.

More information about reducing sickness absence in the civil service can be found at:

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