- Deadline-driven – Completing phases on-time and within-budget increases tension.
- Limited job control – Weather, clients, investors, design changes, and local regulations enforcement can cause construction work to spiral into an out-of-control situation almost daily.
- Long work hours – Overtime fatigue and feelings of family neglect can increase emotional pressure.
- Male-dominated industry – Men in construction work have the highest suicide rates; twice the total suicide rates for men working in other sectors.
- Out-of-town jobs – Family separation can cause guilt and anxiety.
- Pain – The need for physical endurance coupled with chronic pain from over-exertion can lead to depression and/or drug use.
- Reluctance to get help – Physical and mental strength are valued. Mental health problems are considered a personal weakness.
- Seasonal work – Out-of-work times can lead to financial stress.
People who die by suicide have mental health problems, but other conditions can add to at-risk mental health, such as anxiety, drug/alcohol misuse, and trauma.
Pay attention to warning signs of suicidal behaviors and risks:
- “Saving” prescribed medications rather than taking them as prescribed
- Aggressive behavior
- Dramatic mood swings
- Drug abuse
- Giving unexpected gifts of personal items to friends/family
- Impulsive behavior
- Increased alcohol use/abuse
- Recent weapon purchase
- Sudden organization – Getting personal papers in order, paying off loans, “tying up loose ends”
- Withdrawal from friends/family
The fact that suicide risk is highest for men in construction work than in any other career has raised a red flag among medical and mental health professionals. In 2022 – for the first time – the Surgeon General issued Framework for Mental Health & Well-Being in the Workplace.
Its basic tenets included:
- Build a culture of gratitude
- Foster collaboration, teamwork, and trust
- Recognize individuals’ efforts/contributions to company mission
- Encourage personal/professional growth
- Prioritize protection
- Encourage diversity, equity, and inclusion
- Promote workplace physical/psychological safety
- Support work-life balance
- Make schedules flexible/predictable as possible
- Respect boundaries between work/non-work time
Our Construction Monitor marketing strategies are customized for your organization. We do the hard part – pre-sorting and prioritizing information you want. All you need to do is use it. Ask us how. Contact Construction Monitor.