Miners embrace Movember

MORE than 1000 Australian mining industry workers will grow moustaches to help raise awareness and funding for prostate cancer and male depression during the Movember Mining Challenge.
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Lauren Barrett

The Movember Foundation said miners were at a higher risk of having depression due to strenuous working conditions, high stress, fly in/ fly out rosters and lack of community services.

“A stigma also exists within these male-dominated industries that makes many men feel ashamed or weak to admit they are feeling down or having trouble coping,” the foundation said.

Executives from many mining companies around Australia, including Rio Tinto and BHP Billiton will be growing a moustache and encouraging their workers to do the same to help promote the message within their organisations.

Rio Tinto Iron Ore health and safety manager Brett McIntosh is jumping on board the Movember challenge.

McIntosh, who is responsible for the women’s health and mental health strategies for employees in Western Australia, said the mining industry had long been recognised as a tough and resilient industry.

“Men in particular feel it is better to hide their feelings rather than ask for help,” he said.

“At Rio Tinto we recognise the significant strain that many of our employees face due to the challenge of balancing work, family and other components of modern day life.”

McIntosh said Movember was not only fun, but it also helped raise much-needed awareness for men’s health.

Last year, participants within the mining sector raised $A500,000 for Movember.

Visit movember.com to register for Movember’s Mining Challenge.

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