You’ve heard it on the radio, you’ve seen it on the news, and you’ve heard people talk about the release of the WA Parliamentary Inquiry into the impact of FIFO work practices on mental health. So what’s it all about?
The Inquiry was initiated as a result of community concerns that 9 people had committed suicide over a 12 month period, and the ongoing concern of FIFO arrangements on mental health. Some believed that there was no clear evidence that the number of suicides in the FIFO space is any higher than that of the community. The Committee found recent reliable research suggesting the prevalence of mental health issues in FIFO populations is 30% compared to the National average of 20%.
Acknowledging that some degree of FIFO will always be required in the resources and construction industry, the Committee presented 30 recommendations and a call for the development of a Code of Practice on FIFO work arrangements. The report highlights the need for industry to embrace a commitment to mental health within their organisations.
Organisations are at varying degrees of readiness to handle the complexities of psychological health in the workplace and the possible legislative changes that may come as a result of the Inquiry. However, the Inquiry alone should not be the reason for organisations to have a strategy in place to improve mental health in FIFO environments. Psychologically healthy workplaces actually make good business sense.
How organisations manage employee engagement and wellbeing is becoming increasingly important in the eyes of shareholders and investors as more and more research find that employers with good long-term relationships with their employees create better value for the organisation.
When well-being becomes a key priority, the following outcomes are achieved:
- Reduced Absenteeism
- Reduced Incidents
- Reduced Liability
These benefits can be extended to the FIFO environment. Does your workplace enable well-being?
FIFO Focus is the first PerMentis initiative to be launched and centres around strengthening well-being in workplaces to create more resilient employees and organisations operating with a FIFO environment. Our PerMentis Model of Psychologically Healthy Workplace (PHW) is the foundation for our products and services.Download a PDF of our PHW Model