Suicide prevention continues to be a growth area in rainsingfund-raising and awareness raising. On 17 May 2018, Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull released a video supporting a treadmill challenge in support of suicide prevention. It seems an odd campaign when there have been various walks and other events in the past that have more of a public statement that being on a treadmill in a gym. But this is not the only odd suicide awareness event. Last week, Winslow Constructions had a program launch that was also a little odd and a campaign that is worthwhile, as far as it goes.
In May 2018, Winslow Constructions held a media event on one of its residential construction projects to the north of Melbourne.
Today the Medical Journal of Australia released a media statement entitled:
“FIFO workers’ psychological distress “alarming””
What is more alarming is that the levels of psychological distress have remained high even though there have been inquiries into the mental health of Fly-In Fly-Out workers in Western Australia and Queensland since 2014!!
Western Australian research undertaken by
Excessive workplace stress in the medical profession is well documented but stress is often seen as a minor workplace hazard that is fairly easily dealt with by holidays, for instance, or is dismissed as an “occupational hazard” or part of the entry to the profession or just part of the culture, with the implication that nothing can change. Only recently have work-related suicides garnered serious research attention and these incidents are now being openly discussed, as this April 2018 article in the MJA Insight shows.
The author of the opinion piece, Dr
Australia’s entertainment and performing arts sector is gradually attending to the workplace mental health risks that are inherent, or have been shown to be problematic, in their industry. However it continues to operate in isolation rather than facing the reality and magnitude of the problems and the challenges facing lots of industries who have only recently discovered their psychosocial hazards.
The latest edition of Dance Australia magazine contains an interview with Chloe Dallimore,* President of Equity, a division of the Media Entertainment and Arts Alliance (MEAA), which illustrates the willingness to change, but still within limits. Occupational health and safety (OHS) obligations are hardly mentioned, nor is the role of the OHS regulators. Perhaps it is time to include mental health as a workplace incident or condition that should be notifiable under law.
Australia’s occupational health and safety (OHS) agenda seems largely dictated by high risk industries like construction in some States and the mining sector in others. But agriculture is common to all Australia States and is consistently included in the official and unofficial workplace fatality data. New research has been released into serious farm injuries and which voices are the most effective in improving the situation.
The level of risk in Australian farms is illustrated well by