From Sydney, to Dubbo, Port Hedland to Townsville, right down to Melbourne and the McLaren Vale, thousands of construction workers across Australia biggest infrastructure projects recently rocked up to work wearing funky PPE shirts or workwear, and attended BBQ’s and morning teas, all to raise awareness for mental health.

Australia’s largest construction company, CPB Contractors, shone a light on mental health, encouraging thousands of workers across its 60+ projects nationally to proudly wear their funkiest workwear in partnership with social impact PPE brand TradeMutt.

This is the first campaign of this scale and is responding to an industry-wide mental health problem, calling for workers across all sectors of construction and trades to speak up, check in with each other and have their workmate’s backs.

With more than 200 workers lost to suicide annually in the Australian construction industry, CPB Contractors is tackling the issue head on by collaborating with TradeMutt to design a custom PPE workwear titled, Building Connections.

The construction industry is Australia’s largest employer, with 44% of all workers aged 15-44 employed in the workforce, equating to over 1,000,000 full-time workers (1.18 million in 2022 and expected to reach 1.26 million in 2025). As work ramps up across the country this year, CPB

Founded in 2018 by Queensland mates Dan Allen and Ed Ross, TradeMutt makes eye-catching retail workwear emblazoned with the message on the back, “This Is A Conversation Starter”, designed to prompt connection and conversation as a tool to break down barriers and support mental health.

In 2020, TradeMutt launched TIACS, a free mental health counselling service for the blue-collar workforce to access online, via text or phone, and by using the QR code sewn into every TradeMutt shirt pocket. 50% of all TradeMutt profit goes to TIACS to support funding the mental health counselling services.

Since its launch, TIACS has grown to support over 18,230 individuals across 17,800 hours of conversations, giving back over $2.9 million worth of free services to the Australian blue-collar workforce.

 TIACS is a free phone and text counselling service offering counsellor-based services to improve mental health and wellbeing in the construction industry, and the wider blue-collar community. TIACS is contactable between 8AM and 10PM Monday to Friday on 0488 846 988.