Campaigning to improve mental health in construction
Research shows that male site workers are three times more likely to die from suicide than the average male in the UK. In fact, suicide kills more construction workers than accidents in the workplace.
Construction is an industry that struggles more than most with mental health issues
The stereotype is that it has a male-dominated workforce that does not ask for help when it comes to mental wellbeing.
Mental health is the true health and safety crisis in construction.
That’s why Causeway are committed to encouraging and promoting improved mental health practices in all elements of our business and why we are campaigning for companies across the industry to do the same.
Causeway and Everton in the Community
We know from our charity partner Everton in the Community (EitC) that using club loyalty and the power of the football badge can be effective in tackling social issues such as mental health.
In 2023, Causeway helped fund The People’s Place – the first purpose-built mental health and well-being hub attached to a Premier League football club.
We believe that EitC’s People’s Place is a perfect example of how to use passion for the game to generate passion for improving mental health among construction workers. We hope it can act as a blueprint that others within sport can follow to address this issue.
On the back of our work with EitC, we appointed former Everton FC and England midfielder Trevor Steven as our mental health ambassador. He works on construction-specific campaigns for Causeway staff and customers and helps to tackle the silent epidemic within the industry, educating the workforce that it is okay not to be okay.
Report: Mental Health - a crisis in UK construction
Our unique survey of over 1400 on-site construction workers found 56% experiencing mental health problems and 12% experiencing suicidal thoughts.
The survey was conducted by Causeway’s mental health ambassador Trevor Steven – ex-England and Everton football player – who visited sites up and down the country between May 2022 and September 2023.
While most surveys in the sector tend to be completed by office-based employees, Causeway’s approach has been to use the subject of football to encourage workers to open up about their mental health. Crucially, this includes labourers and site-based workers who very rarely complete questionnaires.
The majority of respondents we spoke to were employed full-time or self-employed trades and subcontracted staff on site.
Our findings demonstrate that Mental health is the true health and safety crisis in the construction industry today, and it shows little sign of abating.
A full report of the findings “Mental health: The true health and safety crisis in construction” is now available for download.
We’ve had some very frank conversations over the last 18 months about the reality of working in the industry and how it can impact mental health and it is clear we need to do more than just hanging a few signs up around sites. Mental health needs to be approached in the same way as health and safety
Trevor Steven, Causeway’s mental health ambassador and ex-England and Everton football player
Take the pledge
At Causeway, we fundamentally believe that maintaining stable mental health requires a healthy balance between work and home life and that psychological safety is a prerequisite for success in the construction industry.
Intervention on-site is key.
The results of our recent survey show there is not only a need for intervention on-site but also an appetite for it. This is supported by anecdotal evidence that workers do open up about their mental health when they are approached.
We are therefore asking businesses to pledge greater mental health support to their workforce and to back a campaign for mental health provision to be part of the Health & Safety and Social Value procurement conditions for future construction contracts.