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building a culture that supports mental health

September marks National Suicide Prevention Month.

According to a 2020 study, conducted by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the construction industry has the second highest rate of suicide, with an estimated 45.3 suicides per 100,000. It’s an undeniable and unfortunate truth: many of our lives have been impacted and touched by suicide.

At Russell, we are dedicated to supporting the mental health and wellbeing of our most valued asset, our team members. Russell’s commitment to our team members begins with living our core value of safety, which has been a priority since our company was founded in 1983. While our commitment to safety began with a focus on the physical safety of our team members, our definition has evolved to now encompass both the physical and mental wellbeing of our people.

To keep both the physical and mental wellbeing of our team members top of mind, we engage in a variety of activities and provide resources including;

  • Regular toolbox talks on topics related to mental health and wellbeing.
  • Lunch and learn sessions designed to increase awareness and educate team members on suicide and mental health.
  • An internal career coach who provides in-the-moment support for those who are struggling.
  • 24/7, free access to mental health services for team members and family members through our organization’s Employee Assistance Program, (EAP).
  • Those covered under Russell’s insurance plan have access on-demand resources through our benefits carrier.

While we are proud of the resources we provide, we recognize that there is more work to be done. Russell recently launched a ‘Mental Health Task Force’ to identify new and innovative ways to strengthen our commitment to mental health. The task force is comprised of a cross-functional team of leaders who are dedicated to supporting and improving the lives of our team members, every day.

As industry leaders, we will continue to evolve the mental health and wellbeing resources we provide in an effort to meet team members where they are and provide support to remind them that they are not alone.