Mental Health Awareness Week takes place from 15-21 May 2023 this year and it has become evident in recent times that mental health issues can significantly impact those working in the construction industry.

Studies and reports carried out over the past couple of years have highlighted some startling statistics proving that mental health and wellbeing has taken a massive back seat in the wake of the stresses and strains of modern life alongside the recent COVID-19 pandemic and economic instability.

In order to improve attitudes and awareness in the industry we need to learn more and understand how mental health struggles affect our people.

For more insights and information, check out some of these reports.

Chartered Institute of Building report: One in four construction workers consider suicide (2020)

The CIOB report, Understanding Mental Health in the Built Environment uncovered that;

“26% of construction industry professionals thought about taking their own lives in 2019 – before the COVID-19 pandemic had hit the industry – and 97% recorded being stressed at least once in the last year (2019)”

Chartered Institute of Building report, 2020.

Factors including long hours, delayed payments and job insecurity have all contributed to what CIOB president Professor Charles Egbu describes as a “silent crisis”.

Mates in Mind: Mental Health in UK Construction: The Statistics (2022)

The Mates in Mind study found that worryingly:

“Men in the UK are three times more likely to die by suicide than women. However in construction – a male dominated industry – men are three times more likely to die by suicide than the national average for men”

Mates in Mind: Mental Health in UK Construction: The Statistics (2022)

The report also highlights how the “macho” culture on-site

“prevents many workers from seeking support and help when they may need it, putting further stress on their own mental health and wellbeing.”

Mates in Mind offer help and support to enable you to “Be part of the change” with a range of resources, training, and support.

What now?

We at Paslode, as part of our parent company ITW Construction Products, have identified mental health as a key pillar in our safety agenda. We are taking steps to educate our people about the importance of looking after our mental wellness, providing workshops and digital resources, and have several members of staff trained in Mental Health First Aid.

If these reports have inspired you to make a change on your site, Building Mental Health in Construction have created a fantastic set of resources designed to empower you to start the conversation and shatter the taboo surrounding mental help.

Find all the information you need on their website: https://www.buildingmentalhealth.net/