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Construction industry prepares for site safety stand down

05 April 2018

Some of the construction industry's biggest companies including Wates, McLaren and Seddon have signed up to take part in the country’s largest construction health & safety stand down.

Stop. Make a Change was launched in 2017 to bring the industry together to improve health and safety performance. In its first year more than 60,000 people took part in stand down events.

Last year Stop. Make a Change focussed solely on the infrastructure sector. However, for 2018 this has expanded out to cover the wider construction sector.

Across two weeks from 16 April, there will be stand downs on sites and in offices across the UK, targeting two priority areas: mental health and plant safety.

As well as big builders, two of the industry’s leading charities are also backing to Stop. Make a Change, and will be supporting companies in relation to the mental health priority.

The Lighthouse Club oversees the Construction Industry Helpline and has worked with the Civil Engineering Contractors Association, which manages Stop. Make a Change, to provide thousands of cards and posters that will be distributed to workers. The cards provide details of the helpline, which provides support on mental health & wellbeing, as well as advice on financial, legal, tax and debt management.

Meanwhile construction mental health charity Mates in Mind will provide free ‘Manage the Conversation’ training courses for managers. The courses will run on 24 April in London, Birmingham, Bristol and Newcastle.

Bill Hill, CEO of the Lighthouse Construction Industry Charity said: “CECA are encouraging everyone that participates in Stop. Make a Change to make sure they have one of our helpline packs. The packs include posters for sites and offices and helpline cards that can be distributed to their workforce so that workers know where to turn to if they need support. Our helpline provides a free of charge, confidential 24/7 helpline safety net for all construction workers and their families in the UK and Ireland”.

Steve Hails, chair of Mates in Mind said: “In workplaces across the UK, managers and supervisors are increasingly being approached by workers who are suffering with poor mental health. For many managers, this is a challenging prospect and they may be nervous about how to handle such a conversation. We are proud to support Stop. Make a Change, and to work with CECA to offer training for managers to be more confident in these situations”