Did you know that suicide rates in the construction industry for males are significantly higher than national and state averages for men generally? This fact alone should be reason enough to offer mental health training in your workplace.

But in the construction industry, suicide and other mental health issues such as depression, anxiety, pregnancy/early parenthood and self-harm or self-injury, are not limited to men. They can affect anyone. Here are some facts about mental health issues based on recent research:

• Depression: one in six people will experience depression at some stage in their lives
• Anxiety: one in four people will experience anxiety
• Suicide: almost seven people per day take their own lives
• Pregnancy/early parenthood: one in 10 women experiences antenatal depression, and one in seven experiences postnatal depression.

Awareness of the importance of mental health has had increased markedly in recent times. It’s becoming less of a taboo subject, discussed more openly, and finally recognised as a significant health issue for all Australians.

Master Builders recognises the need to support mental health, and will now be offering mental health First Aid courses to both members and non-members starting in 2017.

Corrie Williams, Head of Training at Master Builders, said the inclusion of this training is long overdue. “I’m hoping this course will prove to be a popular one, considering the importance of promoting social and emotional wellbeing and recognising mental health issues, both in the workplace and outside of it,” she said.

This training will teach employees how to assist colleagues in the workplace who may have developed a mental health illness or are experiencing a mental health crisis. Crisis situations covered are suicidal thoughts and behaviours, deliberate self-harm, panic attacks, traumatic events, severe effects of drug or alcohol use, severe psychotic states and aggressive behaviours.

Why have mental health training in the workplace?

• To improve workplace productivity and a healthy life-work balance
• To empower managers to have difficult conversations
• To provide a pathway for intervention
• To create a supportive environment for staff who are experiencing a mental health problem
• It makes financial sense. Research shows $2.30 is the average return on investment for every $1.00 invested in creating a mentally health workplace (Price Waterhouse and Coopers).

Master Builders offers two options for training:

Mental Health First Aid – two days
Mental Health Workplace Training – one day

We can also come to your office for group bookings.

Visit our website at mbavtraining.com.au, email us at training@mbav.com.au or call on (03) 9411 4555 to book in or for further information.