R U OK? encourages hospitality works to ‘Trust the Signs’

23 August, 2019 by Andy Young

Suicide prevention charity R U OK? is calling on Australia’s hospitality workers to Trust the Signs that a colleague may be struggling with life and to ask them if they are OK.

A survey of hospitality workers commissioned by R U OK? in August 2018 revealed that 80% of hospitality workers agreed that mental health issues, such as feeling depressed, anxious or manic, are a challenge currently facing those in the industry.

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Additionally the research showed that around 50 per cent of hospitality workers in the last year said they had wanted someone at work to ask them if they were ok and around 40 per cent had thought about asking someone if they were ok, but didn’t.

The R U OK? Trust the Signs tour, which hits Bendigo this weekend and Melbourne on Wednesday 28 August, aims to build confidence in recognising when someone might be struggling so that Australians ‘Trust the Signs, Trust their Gut and Ask R U OK?’.

“We know the majority of Australians believe talking to someone who’s struggling can make a difference. But what we’re hearing, is that people aren’t sure when the right time is to have an R U OK? conversation,” said R U OK? CEO Katherine Newton.

“Signs can be subtle changes in verbal or non-verbal behaviour. A loved one might tell you they’re having difficulty switching off or a mate might be withdrawing from social situations like not turning up to training.

“We’re encouraging people to look out for those cues. We can also make a conscious effort when we know someone is going through a significant life change such as job loss, relationship breakdown, study pressure or perhaps becoming a parent.”

“By taking the ‘Trust the Signs Tour’ around Australia, we hope to empower people to trust their gut instinct and ask the question as soon as they spot the signs that someone might be struggling with life.”

R U OK?’s hospitality campaign includes a free set of resources available to download at ruok.org.au.

The resources promote a culture that encourages work family to look out for one another and offer their support in the kitchen, on the floor, during their shift and whenever it’s needed.