MIGAS Apprentices & Trainees has joined forces with TIACS (This is a Conversation Starter) as an Alliance Partner to help extend access to preventative mental health services for Australian Apprentices.
TIACS is a professional mental health support service providing free, unlimited and ongoing access to mental health counsellors for Australia’s blue-collar workforce.
MIGAS Group Chief Executive Officer, David Hoey, said effective and readily available mental health support was needed now more than ever.
“Australia’s skilled trades workforce, particularly mining, engineering, electrotechnology and automotive, is subject to some of the country’s highest suicide rates and I think it’s widely acknowledged that the pandemic has only further magnified the problem,” David said.
“MIGAS employs and mentors apprentices and trainees exclusively in the trades sector and complementary industries. Our partnership with TIACS will further support apprentices to access mental health counselling right from the beginning of their trades career.
“It’s rare to meet someone that has not been touched by mental health either personally, a friend or a loved one. It’s my hope that our alliance with TIACS fosters openness and compassion for those suffering from mental illness and further removes the idea that talking about mental health at work is a taboo,” he said.
TIACS was founded by Ed Ross and Dan Allen, creators of colourful and workwear brand, TradeMutt, which has become a must-have on construction sites to contestants on The Block.
Both former tradies themselves, Ed and Dan put down the tools to start TradeMutt and TIACS after a mate tragically and unexpectedly took his own life in 2016.
“His name was also Dan and was one of the first mates I had made when I moved to Brisbane. This was the first time in my life that I had been affected by suicide. As hard as I remember it being to accept, and the confusion that came with it, it must have been unmeasurable compared to what was felt by his mum, dad and brother. This was truly a life-changing moment,” Dan shared.
“TIACS is a text and call service providing access to mental health clinicians in a free and easy to use way, helping to remove the physical and financial barriers that prevent so many Australians from reaching out for help when they need it.”
“Thanks to our Alliance Partners, it really is an industry-backed solution to an industry-wide problem – together we’ve funded over 3000 hours of free mental health counselling support.”
“We’re pumped and humbled to have MIGAS on board. It’s about showing leadership and having the courage to start a conversation which is just so important for apprentices,” he said.
The TIACS phone line is available Australia-wide, Monday to Friday from 8am-10pm AEST. If you need a yarn, whether about your mental health or simply how your day has been, you can call or text 0488 846 988 to speak with a counsellor.
If you or a loved one are in immediate danger or at risk of harm, please call 000.
For crisis support, such as suicidal thoughts or intentions, please call Lifeline on 13 11 14.
About MIGAS Apprentices & Trainees
MIGAS is a Group Training Organisation that recruits, employs and supports Australians from all walks of life to become trade qualified through an apprenticeship or traineeship pathway. For over 30 years, MIGAS has helped thousands of Australians become skilled tradespeople in their trade of choice.
TIACS is a free text, chat, and callback counselling service for truckies, tradies, and blue-collar workers.