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Building a successful mental health culture in your workplace

16th May 2023

Mental health awareness is a crucial topic across all industries, particularly in the construction sector.

The Construction Industry Training Board (CITB) has been working to raise awareness and address the stigma of poor mental health within the workplace. According to CITB Chief Executive, the statistics are grim. Every day two construction workers take their own life. Factors such as working away from home, heavy workloads, long working hours, late payments, and job insecurity can contribute to poor mental health within the industry.

The CITB has made supporting mental health in construction a priority. Since 2018, they have supported nearly 950 employers and awarded £1,550,396 of funding to mental health projects. Over £1.3m in grants have been paid to support mental health first aid and awareness courses and mental health champions.

The Chartered Institute of Building (CIOB) has also published a report on Understanding Mental Health in the Built Environment, which surveyed 2000 people across the globe. The report presented harrowing statistics of high numbers of workers experiencing extreme stress over a prolonged period, with many people reporting that they had considered taking their own life in 2019.

More support is needed

Professional bodies need to do more to encourage mental health and well-being awareness among members and develop globally-applicable mental health resources that will increase understanding and reduce stigma within the construction industry.

One way to support mental health in the construction industry is by promoting mental health first aid and awareness courses. These courses can help individuals recognise the signs and symptoms of poor mental health and provide them with the tools to support themselves and their colleagues.

Another way to support mental health in the construction industry is by developing a positive workplace culture. This can include promoting open communication, providing access to support services, and reducing stigma around mental health.

What is the TRA doing to support its members?

The TRA supports the Lighthouse Club and its important work to improve mental health in construction. We would encourage all TRA members to access the free support tools available via the Lighthouse website and begin building a successful Mental Health culture in your workplace today.

The TRA is also proud to support the Timber Trades Benevolent Society (TTBS), which helps the retired and less fortunate in the timber industry. TTBS not only assists aged and retired timber trade members and their dependents, but also some much younger workers who have fallen ill, have become severely handicapped, have lost their partners, and are still caring for their children.

If you are looking for help and support, the Construction Industry Helpline is available 24/7 and can be reached on 0345 605 1956.

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