New report finds Qld construction workers suicide rates lowest in Australia

According to MATES in Construction (MIC) suicide rates in the Queensland construction industry have fallen to the lowest across Australia.

The report, Suicide in the Construction Industry, authored by Dr Allison Milner from Deakin University, found Queensland suicide rates had fallen from 46.1 in 100,000 in 2001 and 2002 to around 13.8 in 100,000 in 2012 and 2013.

MIC chief executive officer Jorgen Gullestrup has welcomed the finding saying its pleasing to see that Queensland has moved from having the fourth highest construction suicide rate in 2001 to having the lowest suicide rate in 2012 and 2013.

“The report highlights that suicide rates have been falling in those states and territories where the industry has engaged in suicide prevention, like MATES in Construction,” said Gullestrup.

While construction suicide rates in most states and territories have reduced compared to the employed male average, they are still 71% above the rates of other employed men across Australia. Queensland suicide rates are now only 10% above the average rate for other employed men in the state.

Dr Milner said while the numbers were lowering in Queensland, construction suicides in Australia still needed to be front of mind.

“These results suggest suicide among construction workers should reman a target for suicide intervention and prevention,” Dr Milner said.

“There’s still a long way to go,” said Gullestrup.

“To reach more lives, and help our blokes get help – we need the continued support of the industry.”

“Is it worth the investment? You can ask anyone who has lost a loved one, anyone who has got a second chance at life – I think they would agree.”


Image sourced from Flickr cc: L Castle

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