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The online version of this article (doi:10.1186/s12889-015-2394-x) contains supplementary material, which is available to authorized users.
The authors have no competing interests to declare.
AM, KW, LW, CW, TLM contributed to the design of the Contect&Connect intervention and the statistical analyses described herein. All authors contributed to the drafting of this manuscript and all approved the final version of this manuscript for publication.
Males employed in the construction industry have high rates of suicide. Although reasons underpinning this risk are multifaceted, poor help-seeking and stigma are represent major contributors. Males in the construction industry are also exposed to other risk factors for mental ill health and suicide, including unemployment. Sigma-reducing interventions that are accessible and attractive to recently unemployed males in the construction industry could therefore improve help-seeking, and address depression and suicidal behaviour in this population.
Contact&Connect will use a parallel individual randomized design to evaluate the effectiveness of a multimedia-based intervention aimed at reducing stigma. The intervention consists of a package of 12 brief contact interventions (BCIs) delivered over a six month period. BCIs will direct participants to informational programs and microsites. Content will address three major themes: debunking depression myths and stereotypes, normalisation, and empowerment. Target enrolment is 630 (315 in each arm), each to be followed for 12 months. Eligible participants will be males, between 30 and 64 years, unemployed at the time of recruitment, registered with Incolink (a social welfare trustee company for unemployed members of the construction industry), and own a smart phone with enabled internet connectivity.
At present, there are no programs that have been shown to be effective in reducing stigma in the blue-collar male population. Contact&Connect promises to provide a tailored, efficient, and scalable approach to reducing stigma, depressive symptoms and suicidality among unemployed males.
Australian New Zealand Clinical Trials Register ACTRN12615000792527 (date of registration: 30 July, 2015).