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Lancet Reg Health West Pac ; 16: 100307, 2021 Nov.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1474863
Occup Environ Med ; 2020 Dec 10.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1228913


OBJECTIVE: To examine the association between labour force status, including young people who were unemployed and having problems looking for work, and psychological distress one year later. We then assessed whether this association is modified by disability status. METHODS: We used three waves of cohort data from the Longitudinal Surveys of Australian Youth. We fitted logistic regression models to account for confounders of the relationship between labour force status (employed, not in the labour force, unemployed and having problems looking for work) at age 21 years and psychological distress at age 22 years. We then estimated whether this association was modified by disability status at age 21 years. RESULTS: Being unemployed and having problems looking for work at age 21 years was associated with odds of psychological distress that were 2.48 (95% CI 1.95 to 3.14) times higher than employment. There was little evidence for additive effect measure modification of this association by disability status (2.52, 95% CI -1.21 to 6.25). CONCLUSIONS: Young people who were unemployed and having problems looking for work had increased odds of poor mental health. Interventions should focus on addressing the difficulties young people report when looking for work, with a particular focus on supporting those young people facing additional barriers to employment such as young people with disabilities.

Occup Environ Med ; 2021 Feb 11.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1189912


OBJECTIVES: Employees working in the welfare and healthcare industry have poorer mental health than other occupational groups; however, there has been little examination of suicide among this group. In this study, we examined suicide rates among welfare support workers and compared them to other occupations in Australia. METHODS: We used data from the National Coroners Information System to obtain suicide deaths between the years 2001 and 2016. Using the Australian standard population from 2001 and Census data from 2006, 2011 and 2016, we calculated age-standardised suicide rates and rate ratios to compare suicide rates across different occupational groups. RESULTS: Overall, the age-standardised suicide rate of welfare support workers was 8.6 per 100 000 people. The gender-stratified results show that male welfare support workers have a high suicide rate (23.8 per 100 000 people) which is similar to male social workers and nurses (25.4 per 100 000). After adjusting for age and year of death, both males (rate ratio 1.48, 95% CI 1.23 to 1.78) and female welfare support workers (rate ratio 1.49, 95% CI 1.20 to 1.86) have higher suicide rate ratios compared with the reference group (excluding occupations from the comparison groups). CONCLUSION: The age-standardised suicide rates of male welfare support workers are comparable to occupations which have been identified as high-risk occupations for suicide. Both female and male welfare support workers are at elevated risk of suicide compared with other occupations. Further research is required to understand the drivers of the elevated risk in this group.

Scand J Public Health ; 49(7): 774-778, 2021 Nov.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1088432


AIMS: Worldwide, construction industries are considered to be key economic pillars of the societies they serve, and construction workers constitute a sizeable proportion of the global paid workforce. In many parts of the world, construction workers are at elevated risk of suicide. Here, we examine the extent to which construction workers may be differentially exposed to the economic effects of COVID-19. METHODS: A narrative review and synthesis of the literature was conducted. RESULTS: The economic and labour market shock resulting from the COVID-19 pandemic has led to a convergence of factors that may significantly exacerbate suicide risk among construction workers, particularly among those with lower skills. CONCLUSIONS: With important insights from previous financial crises, it is vital that governments, industry and workplaces act rapidly to mitigate suicide risk among vulnerable groups such as construction workers. Mental healthcare investment is needed, and must be complemented by prevention and control in the workplace and in the general community. Anticipating, preparing and acting to ameliorate this risk, particularly among low skilled construction workers, will save many livelihoods, as well as lives.

COVID-19 , Construction Industry , Suicide , Humans , Pandemics , SARS-CoV-2 , Suicide/prevention & control