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The Larger the Waistline the Smaller the Wallet

The HR Headmistress finds that fat facts are still on the agenda. Following on from our story about Kate Winslet’s exercise regime and the supersized bus drivers, we read that the BBC has recently reported the results of a survey into how obesity affects careers and salary.

This survey, carried out by The Hospital Group, indicates that the obese find it more difficult to earn above the national average income. 2,056 UK adults responded. Just over half (53%) said they were overweight or obese compared with 45% who were normal or underweight. 46% earn more than £20,000 a year, which is the national average, while the majority earn between £10,000 and £15,000.

The overweight or obese said their weight had a negative impact on their ability to take part in leisure activities - 23% mentioned cycling, swimming and running and 14% said it affected their sex lives. They also described some of the ways their weight had held them back in their careers.

One person said they could not comply with the Marine and Coastguard Agency limits for a licence. Another admitted they had taken too many days off because of illness. Many respondents said there was a perception at work that they were lazy but the level of their output did not support that.

One in three adults in the UK are expected to be obese by 2012. In 2012 employers will be taking on the financial responsibility for pensions and could be paying an extra tax for car parking spaces for employees (what do we pay taxes for? Remind me ......).

The HR Headmistress cynically wonders how long it will be before the Government compels employers to pay for gym memberships and other special treatments to help the larger employee get fit. If you need advice on how to manage sickness absence, take a look at our book Off the Sick List!.

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