Team members from local construction firm, The JR Group, welcomed representatives from the Lighthouse Construction Industry Charity to deliver an informal and engaging ‘Toolbox Talk’ at their Upper Achintore site in Fort William.
The ‘Toolbox Talk’ from the charity’s ‘Make It Visible’ team focused on the importance of discussing mental health and wellbeing, as well as exploring the team’s first-hand life experiences in this regard. The valuable support services that they can provide were also highlighted during the session.
The talk from The Lighthouse Club coincides with the charity’s “Talk To Us” month this July – a campaign to encourage people within the industry to feel more open about discussing how they are really feeling.
Outside of the session, The JR Group and The Lighthouse Club have created a ‘safe space’, which provides a direct opportunity for the on-site team to engage with the charity on a one-to-one basis to support and answer any questions they may have on positive mental health and wellbeing practice.
Jim Smith, HSEQ Manager of The JR Group, said: “We were delighted to welcome and host the ‘Make It Visible’ team to highlight the importance of wellbeing and positive mental health practice at our Upper Achintore site.
“Over two thirds of construction workers believe there’s a stigma surrounding mental health which stops them talking about it, sadly this is reflected in the number of suicides in the industry, with workers in construction nearly four times more likely to take their own lives compared to other sectors.
“It’s therefore vital that workers within the construction industry don’t feel pressured to remain silent around issues regarding their own mental health or the wellbeing of a colleague. At The JR Group, we’re proud to encourage a supportive community for all workers on our sites, and we’re grateful to The Lighthouse Charity for providing their expert support to create a positive environment with positive wellbeing in focus.”
Sarah Bolton, COO of the Lighthouse Charity said, “It is so important to visit sites so that we can reach the boots of the ground workforce and ensure that we get our message of support to those who may otherwise not know how or where to reach out for support.
“Key to this process of addressing the barriers within the sector is through an informal approach, letting people know that they are not alone in dealing with these challenges and sharing experiences in a more relaxed manner to reduce the stigma of talking about difficult subjects.”