24 January 2023
Men and families in the Western Australia construction industry now have access to personalised prostate cancer awareness and care, thanks to a new partnership between Prostate Cancer Foundation of Australia (PCFA) and MATES In Construction WA.
The two charities have joined forces this year to help increase awareness of prostate cancer among industry workers, and ensure that those impacted have improved access to no-cost mental health support services to address the psychological impacts of a diagnosis.
PCFA CEO Anne Savage said the move would help reduce the 70 percent increased risk of suicide death for Australian men with prostate cancer.
“Around 2,000 men in WA are diagnosed with prostate cancer each year, and one in five will be diagnosed in their lifetime.
“Concerningly, WA men with prostate cancer face a 70 per cent increased risk of suicide related to the physical and mental health impacts of prostate cancer treatment and its side-effects.
“By partnering with MATES in Construction WA, we’ll be adopting a personalised approach to supporting these men and their families, with the aim to ensure we address any unmet needs for information and mental health support.
“The partnership also responds to the evidence that men with prostate cancer face high risks of long-term anxiety and depression, but do not always access available support when faced with major life stresses.
“Our partnership will ensure we can catch them before they fall, opening up access to PCFA’s no-cost Prostate Cancer Counselling Service and building stronger foundations of health support.”
MATES in Construction WA CEO Liam Cubbage said the partnership would help save lives.
“Every year 190 Australians working in the construction industry take their own lives; this means we lose a construction worker every second day to suicide. MATES in Construction WA provide training and resources to encourage mental health awareness and the development of suicide prevention skills,” Mr Cubbage said.
“Partnering with PCFA ensures we can provide stronger referral pathways to ensure the construction workforce can access dedicated prostate cancer support services.
“In addition, our own staff will undergo prostate cancer awareness training to better equip them in supporting men impacted and raising awareness on construction sites across the state.
“We are proud to work together to save lives.”
Men impacted by prostate cancer can access support via:
PCFA: 1800 22 00 99 or pcfa.org.au
MATES in Construction: 1300 642 111 or mates.org.au
MATES in Construction WA media contact:
Sinead Donovan | M. 0497 430 036
PCFA media contact
Laura McKoy | M. 0435 094 788