Today (October 10th) is World Mental Health Day, a campaign designed to raise awareness of mental health issues, remove the stigma that’s often associated with poor mental health and invite everyone to be part of that conversation.

This year’s theme is ‘suicide prevention’ and it may come as a shock to learn that more than 800,000 people die by suicide every year.

That’s one person losing their life unnecessarily every 40 seconds.

There are numerous factors which can contribute to someone taking their own life (long term mental or physical conditions, violence/ abuse against them, stress and bullying to name just a few). Suicide affects every age group and, worryingly, it’s the second leading cause of death among 15-29-year-olds.

Although it has been reported that the construction industry has the ‘happiest’ workforce, on the flip side, the number of deaths from suicide in construction is estimated to be 10 times higher than deaths by fatal accident.

While we hope very much that no-one in our workforce or sphere of colleagues at Sheriff Construction is facing the kind of difficulties that might lead them to take their own life, we recognise that no-one is immune to the stresses that come with everyday life and work.

Time to talk

If you or someone you know is affected by suicide or any other mental health issues, the number one thing to do is get talking about it. Sharing thoughts with a colleague, friend or professional can help the person affected to see things from a different perspective, to know they are being listened to and feel calmer, and to begin developing a better network of support for the future.

Of course, there’s much more to preventing suicide than this and, as a construction company, we’re no experts in these matters. With that in mind, here’s where resources from the charity MIND’s website could help:

If you have suicidal feelings follow this link

If you want to support someone who feels suicidal follow this link

Here are three further places you can get help or support for mental health issues:

This year’s world mental health day campaign is encouraging people to take ’40 seconds of action’. If you’ve just read this blog, perhaps you can take 40 seconds to share it across your own social network or take 40 seconds to start a conversation with a colleague or friend you may have concerns about.

Let’s keep looking out for each other!


Image source: Pexels