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CII ‘Hidden Gems’ Safety Week Series: Mental Health Awareness

May 6, 2024
Not only is it Construction Safety Week, but May is also Mental Health Awareness Month. The mental health of workers in the construction and utilities industry is “deteriorating quite rapidly” in some cases, according to a CII report. 

The Construction Industry Institute (CII) and the Construction Safety Research Alliance (CSRA) jointly published their findings, which cited financial stress, job demand and factors outside of work as the most significant work-related stressors in the industry. The report makes recommendations to address the matter, including the use of employee assistance programs, education, and taking steps to destigmatize mental health.

You can read the report and findings from RT-401 by clicking here

The findings from the report show what people can do if they or a colleague may be struggling with mental health. The World Health Organization defines ‘mental health’ as “a state of mental well-being that enables people to cope with the stresses of life, realize their abilities, learn well and work well, and contribute to their community”.

What prompted the creation of this report?
Both CII and the CSRA wanted to better understand the mental health of workers in the construction industry. The project aimed to distinguish valid and reliable knowledge from unsubstantiated propositions and thought models. The research team reviewed literature from medical science, collected qualitative and quantitative data from construction workers, and documented the experiences of practitioners.

Recent studies from the US and Canada have shown an increase of mental illness and suicides within the construction and utility industries. The team’s main goal was to better understand why mental health in this industry is declining and how we can help individuals with mental health issues.

What were the report’s most significant findings?
The research team developed nine key takeaways based on the research. It became clear to the team that because mental health is a complicated issue to identify and support, it’s crucial to properly respond when someone is in need.

We are seeing an increase in mental health interventions by people who have the best intentions but are unfortunately not qualified to assist. The best action someone can do is to connect the person needing support with a medical professional.

The team’s findings also showed that there is an opportunity to change the way that we support mental health and individuals’ well-being. By bringing attention to these issues, we can help individuals in need and by doing so, everyone will benefit. There are lots of services available to assist employees in need. Please check with your company to see what additional resources they may have available to you and your co-workers. The Construction Safety Week website also has additional resources available on Mental Health Awareness which can be found here.

CII Safety CBA brings CII ‘Hidden Gems’ Safety Week Series
To mark Construction Safety Week 2024, the CII Safety Community for Business Advancement (CBA) is pleased to provide the CII ‘Hidden Gems’ Safety Week Series, focusing on aspects of safety in the capital facilities industry each day this week. The Safety CBA hopes you find the series informative and applicable to the safety programs within your organization.

The Safety CBA meets on the second Wednesday of each month from 10-11 a.m. CST and invites all CII members to join the sessions.  Topics are posted in the CII Upcoming Events calendar.  Topics for the next two meetings are:
  • Corporate EHSS connection with site EHSS – May 8
  • Observation software, multi-contractor input/output – June 12
Please contact Robert Wible at CII ( if you are interested in becoming a member or attending an upcoming Safety CBA meeting.