Mental health can’t be fixed with duct tape: Engagement strategies for mental health awareness and suicide prevention in the construction industry.

Lay Summary 

The construction industry is both physically and psychologically demanding. Issues such as lack of job control, job insecurity, hazards, job demands, workplace injustice, work/family life conflict, lack of work support, coping mechanisms and stigma toward mental health problems have been identified as factors that place construction workers at an increased risk for poor mental health and death by suicide. While statistics are not available for Canada, current research identifies this as a global issue. In fact, statistics place the suicide rate among construction workers above the national averages in Australia, England and the USA by 2, 3.7 and 4.25 times, respectively.

There is a critical need for conversations aimed at increasing understandings of what workplaces and system partners can do to support the mental health of workers within NL’s construction industry. Researchers at Memorial University and our external partners for this project -- the NL Construction Safety Association, TradesNL, Pennecon, and CMHA-NL -- are proposing to address this need directly.

Using an integrated knowledge transfer and exchange (iKTE) approach, this project would engage Memorial researchers and construction industry stakeholders to develop an industry-wide mental health and suicide prevention (MHSP) strategy for NL workers.

School of Human Kinetics & Recreation
Accelerator Fund for Public Engagement
Start date 
1 Jun 2021
End date 
31 Mar 2022
Lead Organization 
NL Construction Safety Association