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CRL “Flying the Flag” to Prevent Construction Suicides

MEDIA RELEASE: New Zealand’s biggest transport infrastructure project, Auckland’s City Rail Link (CRL), is proud to support Mates in Construction’s “Fly the Flag” campaign this week to prevent suicides, particularly in the construction industry.
 
“CRL will be employing up to 1600 people at peak. Their mental health and wellbeing are just as important as ensuring their physical safety,” says City Rail Link Ltd’s General Manager Health, Safety, Environment & Sustainability, Rob Mair.  
 
Mates in Construction is an organisation that began in Australia before crossing the Tasman last year to combat a high rate of suicide among New Zealand construction workers.
 
More than 200 New Zealand construction sites, including those that are building CRL, are flying special flags this week, which coincides with World Suicide Prevention Day on Thursday (10 September).
 
“Our project’s vision for health and safety is ‘Mahia te mahi, hei painga hei oranga mo tātou katoa’ – to do the work for the good of everyone.   In addition to proudly displaying the Mates’ flag,  sites being managed by our delivery partners – the Link Alliance, DSB-JV and Connectus -  have  programmes of events and toolbox talks to reinforce the message to all our workers that there is help available when the going gets tough,” Mr Mair says.
 
CRL’s long-term partnership with Mates in Construction will continue for the duration of the project, which is planned to be completed in 2024. 
 
Mr Mair says a Mates Field Officer, Berhampore ‘B’ Peleti, is a regular at CRL sites and has trained 379 workers, with more to come.  
 
“With B’s support, our site teams are putting in place mental health networks to help identify and support any individuals who are struggling, and providing additional training to workers who will become local suicide awareness champions.
 
“We’re building a world class rail project for Auckland, and key to that is to make sure that when all our workers finish their shifts they get home to their family and friends safely,” Mr Mair says. 
 
For more information about Mates in Construction contact Daniel Paul (021 400-993)
Information on Fly the Flag is available on-line at www.mates.net.nz/fly-the-flag
 
 
People can stay up to date with the City Rail Link project at: https://www.cityraillink.co.nz
 
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