Bravo to our mental health first aiders

Everyone will, at some point, experience difficulties whether that be personal, family, health or financial. As a business, we have a duty of care to support our colleagues, which is why we continue to invest in our employee health and wellbeing programme. This year we have renewed this commitment with the introduction of a wonderful team of mental health first aiders.  I would personally like to take this opportunity to thank those volunteers who have taken the time to qualify, so they can use their knowledge to promote mindfulness and support their friends and colleagues.

Mental ill health continues to be a silent crisis within the construction industry, with construction workers six times more likely to die from suicide than a fall from height and males three times more likely to commit suicide than those in other sectors.  Over two thirds of construction workers believe there is a stigma surrounding mental health which prevents them from talking about it.

I believe the industry must acknowledge the impact of mental ill health and promote awareness to help combat negativity and transform perceptions. At Hodgson Sayers we believe small changes within the business and the implementation of mindfulness into our daily routine, can have a positive impact.

Everyone has a role to play in changing attitudes no matter what their position. Managers and colleagues should take time to check in with their peers, spending time each day to speak to them. Finding out what is going on in their lives is an important part in building relationships and breaking down barriers.  Being open, starting the conversation and providing an opportunity for people to share their thoughts can provide a lifeline.

In addition, to the support we offer in-house, we are utilising external occupational health providers and counsellors who provide a one-to-one bespoke service. We also promote external resources including the Construction Industry Helpline, managed and funded by the Lighthouse Construction Industry Charity, which has been delivering charitable welfare and support to the construction community since 1956.