It's International Men's Day! A day to celebrate the achievements and contributions of men all over the world.
It's all about making a positive difference to the health and wellbeing in the lives of men and boys. And that's something we should all be doing every day, not just on International Men's Day.
We need to make men's health a priority because, unfortunately, it's not always a priority for men themselves. In fact, men are more likely than women to die from preventable causes like heart disease, stroke and cancer.
And it's not just physical health that we need to worry about. Mental health is a big issue for men too. According to the World Health Organization, suicide is the biggest cause of death for men aged 20-49. That's shocking. And it's even more shocking to us when you consider that male construction workers are more likely to take their own lives than workers in any other industry or profession.
So what can we do to make men's health a priority? For starters, we need to create workplaces that are safe and healthy for everyone.
Dangerous workplaces are made even more dangerous where mental health isn't treated as a priority. We need to make sure that men feel comfortable talking about their mental health at work and that they have access to support if they need it.
At MPI, that means having a team of mental health first aiders. They're always available for our male (and female) colleagues to talk to without fear of judgement or prejudice.
We also need to encourage men to take care of their physical health. That means eating well, exercising regularly and getting regular check-ups. And finally, we need to encourage men to open up about their feelings.
Over 70% of men feel like they are expected to control their emotions by not showing weakness, fear or crying openly. This isn't healthy or helpful. We need to create a culture where men feel like they can express their feelings openly without judgement or stigma.
At MPI, we've been working to create and maintain safe and healthy workplaces for some time, but we know there is always more to do and ways to improve. If you have any questions, comments or suggestions on this topic, please contact us firstname.lastname@example.org.
Let's all make a pledge to continue making our sectors safer, healthier and more enjoyable places to work and to support each other in taking care of our mental and physical health.
Happy International Men's Day!
If you or a colleague are in need of support, there are lots of resources available and people who can help. The resources below are a great starting point.
If you're not feeling OK, you can get in touch about anything that’s troubling you, no matter how large or small the issue feels. Call free from any phone on 116 123.
Advice and support to empower anyone experiencing a mental health problem. Call the Mind Infoline free on 0300 123 3393 for direction to appropriate services.
Or contact one of our mental health first aiders on one of the numbers below.