Hon Roger Cook BA GradDipBus MBA MLA

Hon Roger Cook BA GradDipBus MBA MLA

Deputy Premier; Minister for Health; Mental Health

    New mental health research project to further support FIFO sector

    11/10/2017 11:30 AM
     
    • ​The McGowan Labor Government recognises the importance of ensuring WA has the right tools and evidence to improve wellbeing and mental health in the fly-in fly-out sector
    • Almost $1 million is injected into university research for workplace mental health and wellbeing
    • Announcement coincides with 50th annual Mental Health Week

    The McGowan Government has granted The University of Western Australia's (UWA) Centre for Transformative Work Design, $498,841 to carry out research into the wellbeing and mental health impact of fly-in fly-out (FIFO) arrangements on workers.

     

    Mental Health Minister Roger Cook announced the research program today as part of the 50th annual Mental Health Week to encourage more people to turn their attention to mental health awareness and contribute to this Western Australian study.

     

    The research program will seek to understand the range of workplace factors that contribute to mental health issues in FIFO workers and identify positive strategies that can be used by individuals, families and organisations in the FIFO environment.

     

    A research reference group including the Mental Health Commission; family representatives; employee and employer representatives; and mental health, and alcohol and other drug peak bodies will guide the project.

     

    The research is in response to recommendations from the Education and Health Standing Committee on FIFO mental health and concerns raised by families.

     

    FIFO workers and their families will play an important part in this study and people are invited to express their interest and find out more by visiting http://www.crowdresearch.uwa.edu.au/project/mental-health-fly-fly-fifo-workers

     

    Last month, the State Government announced another new partnership with The University of Western Australia which saw $500,000 invested into UWA's Centre for Transformative Work Design for the development of a comprehensive set of mental health support resources for WA workplaces.

     

    These two projects combined bring the total government investment in projects undertaken by UWA's Centre for Transformative Work Design into workplace-related mental health and wellbeing to almost $1 million.

     

    For support, call beyondblue on 1300 224 636 for 24/7 free counselling or Lifeline in a crisis situation on 13 11 14.

     

    Comments attributed to Mental Health Minister Roger Cook:

     

    "In Western Australia, we have a large population of FIFO workers. The benefits and challenges of a FIFO lifestyle can be different to other workforces and parts of the community.

     

    "It's important we determine the nature of wellbeing in this sector and the specific factors and strategies that governments, employers and employees can implement to address mental health and wellbeing of FIFO workers.

     

    "Having mentally healthy workplaces, across all sectors, is good for workers, the community and business.

     

    "This funding will enable important research into the role of workplace factors which shape mental health in FIFO workers. Some of these factors include the attributes of the jobs, rosters, the company culture, leadership, team support and family relationships.

     

    "The McGowan Labor Government welcomes insightful wellbeing and mental health research, and initiatives like these. That's why we are investing $61.7 million, over the next four years, to boost mental health prevention and community and treatment services to better support WA communities."

     

    Minister's office - 6552 6500