Charity launches campaign to tackle mental health ‘crisis’ in construction

A new campaign is being launched to highlight a crisis in mental health among workers in the construction industry.

The Band of Builders charity is holding a series of events across the UK on October 1 to help tradespeople connect and talk in a bid to remove the taboo around mental health in the sector.

The charity is encouraging tradespeople, builders’ merchants and others to hold their own a so-called Big Brew event to encourage people to discuss mental health issues and offer support.

Band of Builders said there is a mental health crisis in the industry, with the suicide rate of UK construction workers estimated to be as high as two people every day.

Bricks (David Davies/PA)
Bricks (David Davies/PA)

It added that more than 400,000 working days were lost to mental health issues in 2018 in the construction sector.

Peter Cape, of Band of Builders, said: “It’s so important that the construction community looks out for each other, to talk about mental health or look for the telltale signs that fellow tradespeople may be struggling – and what better way to do it than over a brew.

“We are all acutely aware of the mental health crisis within construction.

“Suicide rates in the sector were already at one per day before the Covid pandemic, according to ONS figures, and it’s widely accepted that these have worsened to closer to two per day.”