April 16, 2015 will be the inaugural industry-wide Rail R U OK? Day, with the TrackSAFE Foundation leading a group of Australian companies to raise awareness of depression and trauma as a result of rail incidents.
A spin-off of the R U OK? not-for-profit, Rail R U OK? Day is designed to focus on engaging rail staff in conversations about their emotional status by promoting them to answer the simple question: Are you okay?
“We believe stations are a place of interaction and engagement within communities that foster people coming together,” TrackSAFE said.
“Let us extend this sentiment into our work environment by showing support for our rail staff.”
Several major Australian rail businesses have signed on for the inaugural Rail R U OK? Day, including ARTC, Aurizon, Bombardier, Downer, John Holland, Genesee & Wyoming, Pacific National, UGL and several others.
Paul Larsen, chief executive of Brookfield Rail, which is also signed up to take part, said the company is committed to helping its employees feel safe and supported at work.
“Looking after ourselves and each other is important for all of us,” Larsen said. “However we are all guilty of getting caught up in the details of our days and failing to realise those around us might not be ok.
“Together the rail industry is making positive steps to increase awareness of the importance of mental health by encouraging rail employees to connect with, and offer support to, one another.
“We realise that regular, meaningful conversations can really help someone who is struggling to feel supported and connected,” he continued.
“That is why we will be actively encouraging employees to start meaningful conversations with their workmates by asking them, are you okay?”
Brookfield will coordinate a series of activities on Thursday aimed at encouraging their employees to take part in these conversations.
TrackSAFE and R U OK? have partnered to deliver the new campaign. Click here for more information.