Focus on worker mental health
As the drought continues unabated across many parts of rural Queensland, agriculture workers have been urged to keep an eye on their mates and watch for signs that the pressure is becoming too much.
Living and working in rural and remote communities can bring unique causes of stress. People who live and work in these areas can experience additional pressures such as social isolation, financial hardship, lack of employment opportunities, and coping with natural disasters (fire, flood or drought). You or someone you know may feel:
- that you have to manage stressful situations alone
- unable to cope and feel embarrassed about it
- unable to manage on your own
- unable to confide in family or friends.
Often, these pressures can have a major impact on your mental health and wellbeing, and you may experience symptoms of anxiety, depression or other health related issues.
Workplace Health and Safety Queensland has a comprehensive online guide to tackle mental health in workplaces, which will feature heavily in Queensland Mental Health Week promotions 6-14 October. Mental Health Week is an annual event aimed at increasing awareness of mental health and wellbeing.
If you are looking to promote the importance of positive mental health at work during Mental Health Week, here are some ideas:
- hold a mental health awareness session to reduce stigma and promote help seeking behaviours
- show and discuss Libby Trickett's film about her personal experience with mental health issues
- check out Heads up toolbox talks on how to get a mental health conversation started in your workplace
- download our Mentally healthy workplaces toolkit and other information and resources
- remind staff about how to access information on local mental health services or your employee assistance provider
- consider fundraising for a mental health organisation doing great work in your community
More information on mentally healthy rural workplaces is at qld.gov.au/health/mental-health/rural.
Find out more about what others are doing at Mental Health Week website.
Download Reachout's Digital Drought Care Package or Head to Health resources for people living in rural and remote areas and the Rural Minds program.