The construction industry can be a rewarding place to work – but in a high-pressure, often stressful environment, it can also affect our mental health. This Mental Health Awareness Week, we at Hollywell are committed to eradicating the stigma of mental ill-health in the construction industry, and doing what we can to support positive change.
Within our company we are proud to promote a positive working environment for all our employees, with regular socials and other events. But we’re aware that people still suffer, so we’re working to improve our mental wellbeing policy. Having benefited from their input and training, we’re delighted to support the mental health awareness charity, Mates In Mind, for the work they do to transform the culture around mental health in the construction industry.
Mental health in the construction industry
With long hours, tight deadlines, rising prices, budget worries and long-term jobs away from home, working in the construction industry isn’t always good for our mental wellbeing. And the statistics bear this out:
- Men working in construction have three times the risk of dying by suicide than men in other industries
- Over 700 people working in the construction industry die by suicide every year – that’s 2 people every single day
- Nearly half (48%) of those working in construction have taken time off work due to unmanageable stress
- 34% of those working in construction have experienced a mental health condition in the last 12 months
- Mental health conditions including stress, anxiety, and depression account for 20% of workplace absences – that’s 70 million sick days every year
- Employers could do more. 73% of construction workers surveyed felt that their employers did not recognise the early signs of a mental health problem
- Over half of those working in the construction industry (56%) work for a company with no mental health policy in place
Clearly something needs to change.
The stigma of mental health in construction
Many people, particularly men, find it hard to talk about their mental health. In a predominantly male workforce, this reluctance and stigma can mean that any problems are likely to get worse before they can get better.
With support for mental health awareness and by building a positive culture where it’s easier to speak out, more can be done to address mental health issues within the workplace, and here at Hollywell we are working hard to promote such a culture. Training courses for both employers and employees are a great place to start: they can educate bosses on how to open up the conversation within the workplace and respond effectively when someone comes to them with a problem. And for employees, they can promote a better understanding of the importance of looking after their own mental health. At Hollywell we take such training seriously: we already have a mental health first-aider who is trained to support people experiencing the first signs of mental-ill health. We plan to get other employees trained too, so everyone feels they have someone they could talk to if needed.
Hollywell support mental health awareness charity, Mates In Mind
Mental health awareness charity, Mates in Mind, is working hard to promote positive wellbeing in the workplace. They provide sector-specific support to those working in construction, as well as other industries. Founded in 2017, the charity has already supported hundreds of employers in the construction industry – including Hollywell – to transform the culture around mental health within their organisation. They have done this through specially designed training courses, literature and assessments of workplace mental health programmes. We are currently working with Mates In Mind to improve our mental health policy.
Want to find out more or support the charity? Just visit matesinmind.org
Get in touch
At Hollywell, we’re committed to keep working with Mates In Mind to improve awareness and reduce the stigma around mental health in the workplace. Any questions? Just contact us on 01727 810555.