Staff Health & Safety Newsletter
Mates In Construction
About Mates in Construction
Mates in Construction (MIC) was founded by The Building Redundancy Trust (BERT) Welfare Fund in 2008. MIC provides support through its program of suicide awareness and prevention and other initiatives. MIC supports workers with mental health problems or prevents them from developing those issues. MIC operates in NSW, QLD, WA and SA.
According to the Suicide in Queensland’s Commercial & Construction Industry report, workers in the Queensland Construction industry, are six times more likely to suicide than to die from an industrial accident.
Suicide is a very real problem in the construction industry and most suicides occur with warning signs. Among the workers who completed suicide, more than half had communicated a suicide intention within 12 months prior. Nevertheless, only a very small number of workers (less than 7%) sought professional help.
It is rarely a single event or situation that causes a person to suicide. It is more likely to be a culmination of major life events where several things pile up finally causing them to reach a tipping point. Problems might be at home or at work. Usually, it is a combination of both. As a matter of fact, relationships are a major factor in suicides, as is substance abuse. These factors are more common in the construction industry and it is our shared responsibility to lower these statistics.
Prevention can save as many as 30% of suicides. Studies show that the implementation of a prevention strategy at an industrial level might save more lives than lives lost through workplace accidents.
What MIC can achieve:
When MIC’s strategy is fully applied, the following results can be achieved:
• Raising awareness of suicide as a preventable problem
• Making getting help easy
• Ensuring appropriate help is available
MIC based itself on the fact that most people who intend to complete suicide would rather live than die. Simply put, they find it impossible to manage their pain. MIC will identify the behavioural signals exhibited from a suicidal worker and provide the workers with alternatives.
Onsite cultural change
It is also essential to change the culture within the industry in order to make it possible for workers to discuss their issues while at work. This will also improve health and safety in the workplace.
How does it work?
MIC runs diverse programs to raise awareness and train people on site. This ranges from a general awareness training session of one hour, the appointment of a connector or connectors after a training session or a suicide first aid training spanning over 2 days.
Workers have access to a 24 hour, 7 day a week helpline and through this have access to immediate help and counselling.
If you or your mates need any help, please call MIC 24/7 helpline on 1300 642 111.
Congratulations Ashling Moran!
Ashling was the first to provide us with the correct answer to last month’s quiz question - "How much sleep do most adults need?“.
Thank you for your participation Ashling, we hope you enjoy your prize!
Mental Health First Aid
What are mental health problems?
A mental disorder or mental illness is an illness that affects a person’s thinking and disrupts the person’s ability to work or carry out daily activities and engage in satisfying personal relationships. Some people have only one episode of mental illness in their lifetime, while others have multiple episodes and periods of wellness in-between.
There are different types of mental disorder such as:
• Anxiety disorders
• Bipolar disorder
How common are mental illnesses?
Mental illnesses are common in the Australian community. A recent survey found that one in five (20%) had a common illness at some point during the previous 12 months. This means that one in five Australians aged 16-85 suffer from some form of common mental illness in any year. This is equal to 3.2 million people.
What are the treatment options?
There are many different types of treatment available. Once the person has made the decision to seek help, they may choose from a number of helping sources, treatment approaches and services settings. There is no “one size fits all” approach for mental illnesses. Some treatments available depending on the mental illness are:
• Medical treatments
• Psychological treatments
• Complementary treatments and lifestyle changes
• Support groups
• Rehabilitation programs
• Family and friends
What is mental health first aid?
Mental health first aid is the help offered to a person developing a mental health problem, experiencing a worsening of an existing mental health problem or in a mental health crisis.
Employee of the month
Congratulations Alex Zaroulias !
Congratulations Alex for being our employee of the month! Thank you for your dedication and hard work as a Labourer! We are proud to have you in our team!
Please answer the following question for your chance to win a $50.00 Coles/Myer Voucher! Text your answer to 0429 306 540 with your full name and State to be in the running to win.
What is Mates In Construction?