Farm Safety Week – Mental Wellbeing on the farmyard

Date published: 19 July 2018

Farm Safety Foundation, Farm Safety Partnerships, the Health & Safety Executive, Health & Safety Executive for Northern Ireland and Health & Safety Authority, Ireland once again join forces to drive the initiative. HSENI annual workplace fatality statistics show some signs of improvement but there is still a need to reduce the excessively high rate of accidents in the industry.
Thursday’s theme – Mental Wellbeing

Anyone can experience excessive pressure and demands outside work just as much as they can at work. This is particularly true for farmers; unpredictable weather, the economic downturn, rising costs, uncertain future, aches and pains, as well as feelings of isolation can all cause pressures for the farming community and can lead to issues with a farmer’s mental wellbeing.

Farmers tend to work long and anti-social hours and may focus more on their business and their animals than their own wellbeing. Striking a fair balance between work and mental wellbeing is key for a successful business therefore it is becoming increasingly important for farmers to consider the issue of mental wellbeing and encouraging them to talk about their troubles and to find a way of dealing with them.

Many farmers never stop to consider the consequences, or to take seriously the outcomes of poor mental wellbeing. Therefore it is becoming increasingly important within the farming community that this issue is brought to the forefront, and for farmers to consider their work ethics and schedules to reduce the effect of poor mental wellbeing.

Farm Safety Partnership Chairman Keith Morrison said: “It is important for farmers to realise that poor mental wellbeing can affect their ability to farm safely.

“Farming is becoming an increasingly competitive and innovative industry, therefore the pressures to succeed with business have increased, leading to higher stress levels and tension for farmers.

“HSENI would encourage farmers to consider their mental wellbeing at work in just the same way as the physical hazards and to try to put in place controls to reduce these risks. Support is out there in the form of charities such as Rural Support and I would really encourage anyone who is struggling to seek help”

For more information on Mental Wellbeing visit

For more information on Farm Safety Week, visit www.yellowwellies.org or follow @yellowwelliesUK on Twitter/Facebook using the hashtag #FarmSafetyWeek

For members of the press who would like to arrange an interview, either with the NI Farm Safety Partnership or with those featured please contact:

Donna McCullough or Joe Livingston, Communications, HSENI
Tel:
                028 9024 3249      

Email:            media@hseni.gov.uk

 

Notes to editors: 

1. For more information on the Farm Safety Partnership please contact HSENI on 0800 0320 121 or visit the FSP webpage: The Farm Safety Partnership

 2. Farm Safety Week 2018 is supported by the Farm Safety Foundation, Farm Safety Partnerships, the Health and Safety Executive, the Health and Safety Executive for Northern Ireland and the Health and Safety Authority, Ireland.

3. The Campaign aims to highlight the serious dangers posed by farms and offers themed practical advice and guidance for farmers.

4. Rural Support was formed as a charity in 2002, and provides support through a helpline which offers a listening and signposting service for farmers and rural families. The Helpline number is 0800 138 1678, website Rural Support or email info@ruralsupport.org  

5. The Farm Safety Partnership comprises the Health and Safety Executive for Northern Ireland (HSENI), the Department of Agriculture, Environment and Rural Affairs (DAERA), the Ulster Farmers’ Union (UFU), NFU Mutual (NFUM), the Young Farmers’ Clubs of Ulster (YFCU) and the Northern Ireland Agricultural Producers Association (NIAPA). It is tasked with assisting Northern Ireland’s farming community to work safely and tackle the problem of work-related fatalities and injuries on farms.

6. The Farm Safety Partnership’s ongoing ‘Stop and Think SAFE’ farm safety campaign focuses on the four main causes of death and injury on our farms – slurry, animals, falls and equipment (SAFE).

7. For media enquiries please contact HSENI Press Office on 028 90243249 or email media@hseni.gov.uk. For out of hours please contact the Duty Press Officer via pager number 076 2397 4383 and your call will be returned.

8. HSENI is the lead body responsible for the promotion and enforcement of health and safety at work standards in Northern Ireland.

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