The rash of fentanyl deaths is overwhelming. Six people die in British Columbia every day from toxic drugs. 20% of those are tradespeople. These are mostly working men, who use recreationally or have dependencies that see them use drugs unsupervised. When they overdose there is nobody around to help them. The Vancouver Island Construction Association is working to control this crisis with their ‘Hammer Time’ toolbox talk program. Follow this link for more information.
The Toolbox Talk is an introductory conversation about substance use, mental health, the current toxic drug supply, and what harm reduction/recovery services are available in each region of the island. The Toolbox Talk can be delivered in 3 lengths: 30 minutes, 45 minutes, or 1 hour. It can be delivered with a slideshow, or solely discussion-based. And finally, it can be delivered in person at your site or via Zoom. There is no cost to receive the Toolbox Talk and instructors can come to you up and down the Island and surrounding communities!
Men in general and construction men, in particular, bear their burdens with few complaints. This makes us great workers, but it stops us from taking good care of ourselves when we need help. Each of us can help by checking up with any of our fellow trades who we think might be struggling. Here are some ways to get the conversation going.
Questions like: How have you been? …How’s your stress level lately? …Have you been sleeping? …Is there anything you want to talk about? …What can I do for you? …When should I check in with you again? These are all good conversation starters.
Here is an innovative program in Alberta that is also working to keep construction workers safe from mental illness: Link
Let’s keep each other safe and buddy up.