A survey run by engineering services trade bodies ECA and BESA found a host of problems including stress, depression and suicidal thoughts.
ECA Director of CSR Paul Reeve said: “It’s absolutely clear from these findings that poor payment is a serious cause of mental health issues across the industry and that the problem, far from being isolated to certain individuals, is commonplace among top management.
“These problems quickly knock on to employees and families alike.
“Findings such as these mean that clients and other buyers need to greatly improve their approach to supply chain payment and it’s a sad reflection on the industry that it will probably take legislation to achieve it.”
The survey found that business owners have an array of significant mental health problems due to the pressures of late or unfair payment, including:
- Stress (80 per cent)
- Depression (36 per cent)
- Extreme anger (38 per cent)
- Anxiety and/or panic attacks (40 per cent)
- Insomnia (36 per cent)
- Suicidal feelings (10 per cent)
BESA CEO David Frise said: “Systemic payment abuse causes broken lives and broken buildings and must be stamped out.
“The economic damage of these practices is well known but this survey has shed light onto its devastating human cost”