July 21 2016.

BEN, the charity dedicated to supporting those working in the automotive industry, has launched a new physical health and wellbeing campaign pledging to help employees stay fit and healthy. The campaign is particularly relevant as a total of 23.3 million days were lost in the UK due to work-related ill health in 2014/15[1]. Additionally, back, neck and shoulder issues, which are common for those working in the automotive industry, was the second highest cause of work days lost during the same period.

The new ‘Physical Health & Wellbeing’ campaign offers relevant information and guidance to industry staff and also helps employers look after the health and fitness of their workforce, many of whom undertake highly physical tasks as part of their job.

The campaign also aims to help keep the industry running as, on average, each person suffering with ill health in the UK took around 19 days off work in 2014/15[2]. In addition, stress, depression or anxiety and musculoskeletal disorders accounted for the majority of days lost due to work-related ill health, accounting for 9.9 and 9.5 million days respectively[3]. Another campaign objective is to raise awareness of these issues by highlighting the impact that employees’ physical health can have on employers through working days lost and the effect on the industry as a whole.

The ‘Physical Health & Wellbeing’ campaign is the fourth of BEN’s new Four Pillars framework launched this year. Each pillar shines a light on key areas where BEN can supportautomotive industry employees (past and present) and their dependents, in the areas of mental health, financial health, social health and physical health. The campaign offers practical advice to help prevent illness in the workplace as well as conditions that can also have a knock-on effect on an individual’s mental health and finances.

Jools Tait, Business Development Director at BEN, said: “At BEN, we are increasing our partnership work with all sectors of the automotive industry to promote physical fitness for all employees. Physical fitness is especially crucial for automotive employees, many of whom are in physically demanding roles. Musculoskeletal (Back, neck and, shoulder) issues are common for those working in the industry, resulting in physical incapacity and in people taking a lot of time off work.

“Additionally, the positive effects that exercise can have on reducing stress and improving self-esteem[4] have been well documented. Physical fitness can have a wide-reaching and lasting impact on other areas of life. We hope that this new campaign will help people take steps to get physically fit, leading to less stress and a more socially active lifestyle.”

BEN can also help those suffering with a serious condition. When someone is diagnosed with a life-limiting, chronic or degenerative health condition, the thought tends to be that all the help and support needed will come from a doctor or health provider. But there may be ways BEN can help too. BEN provides support and access to specialists, so those suffering from a serious illness or physical incapacity can get back on their feet as soon as possible. BEN also provides free information, advice and guidance on a wide range of additional issues, via its confidential hotline.

BEN's services are free and confidential and not only support those working in the automotive industry but also their dependents.

All calls to BEN’s national helpline 08081 311 333 are confidential and free from landlines or mobiles.

For more information on BEN’s physical health and wellbeing campaign visit