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28 September 2023
As part of October’s National Safe Work Month, a global campaign and fundraising quest has launched to raise awareness about, and help prevent, mental health issues and suicide in the construction sector.
Free mental health resource
The campaign acknowledges that workers in the sector struggle with mental health issues and have a higher suicide rate than many other sectors.
Learn more from the Get Construction Talking online portal with free resources, including video, articles and webinars.
Funding for MATES in Construction
As part of the campaign, Queensland construction workers will benefit from a $1 million fund Procore and The B1M aim to raise through donations.
Five charities that specifically support construction workers’ mental health will share those funds. MATES in Construction, which operates throughout Australia and New Zealand, is one of those charities.
Why we need to talk
One in five people overall have experienced mental health challenges in the past 12 months, reports the Australian Institute of Health and Welfare.
And, a construction worker dies by suicide in Australia every second day on average, according to joint research from the University of Melbourne and MATES in Construction.
Nine in 10 construction workers are male and men account for 75 per cent of suicides, says the Australian Men’s Health Forum. It says most men who had suicided were prompted not by mental health issues but spousal issues, chronic alcohol, or substance abuse, legal or employment/unemployment issues.
How to start the conversation
People are the construction sector’s most valuable resource.
Make work a safer space for private conversations about mental health and situational issues, so workers won’t feel ostracised.
- Encourage workers to spot the signs their peers might be struggling mentally and ask if they’re OK.
- At your next toolbox talk, share best practices to improve mental health to stay connected.
- Point workers to support such from MATES in Construction, R U OK, etc.
Building a legacy
Procore and The B1M are helping to improve the headspace of construction workers across the globe.
Get involved. Find out more about the campaign and how to donate on the Get Construction Talking portal. Help today’s and tomorrow’s construction workers build a more enduring legacy.