Figures released by the Office for National Statistics today suggest that thousands of Bristol tradesmen could be at a higher risk of taking their own lives.
The national report, based on numbers of suicides by type of work from 2001 to 2015, shows that men employed in low-skilled work such as labouring and skilled trades such as plastering were the two groups of male employees most at risk of suicide.
Low-skilled workers had the highest risk, at 44% higher than the national average. Suicides in this group accounted for 1,784 of all male suicides nationally where their job was recorded. Men in skilled trade roles had the second-highest risk with 3,059 of all male suicides over the time period.
The latest employment figures for Bristol do not distinguish between genders, but male low-skilled and skilled trades workers inevitably make up a significant proportion of the the city’s working population.
“Suicide is complex. There is never a single reason or circumstance that leads to a person taking their own life”
The ONS report also suggests that Bristol’s 64,000 professionals are at lower risk of suicide than other workers. Male and female professionals are at lower risk than other employees. In Bristol professionals make up over a quarter of the city’s workforce.
‘Reach out for help’
Samaritans CEO Ruth Sutherland said: “We hope the statistics published today will encourage employers and employees across the board to ask themselves, what more can we be doing to ensure that if someone is struggling they can reach out for help in the workplace and beyond, assured that they will be taken seriously and offered accessible, high quality support.”
If you are concerned about someone you work with, or with your own mental health, please contact the Samaritans here or call 116 123.