Southern Program Alliance taps Lysander for mental health work

29 August 2022 3 min. read
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Lysander has won a bid to deliver leadership and culture solutions for two major construction projects in Victoria.

Having noted 236 road deaths in 2021, a more than 10 per cent jump compared to the year previous, Victoria’s state government is keen on bringing down the number of causalities.

The Victorian Road Safety Strategy 2021-2030 aims to halve deaths by 2030 and put the state on a path to eliminate all road deaths by 2050. To achieve this ambition, several initiatives are currently being rolled out.

Southern Program Alliance taps Lysander for mental health work

One of the programs focuses on removing 85 of Melbourne’s most dangerous and congested level crossings by 2025 – the so-called ‘Level Crossing Removal Project’ is the largest rail infrastructure project in the state’s history.

The Southern Program Alliance is one of five alliances contracted by the government to deliver the project. The alliance, which comprises Lendlease, Acciona, Coleman Rail, WSP and Metro Trains Melbourne, has been tasked with removing level crossings along the Frankston and Hurstbridge lines. Removing the level crossings will reduce risk for pedestrians, cyclists and motorists as well as create new community spaces for residents to enjoy.

With Psychological Health Regulations likely to be incorporated into the Occupational Health and Safety Act in Victoria, the Southern Program Alliance has turned to Lysander – a consultancy specialised in developing a health and safety culture in the construction sector – for guidance.

“The regulations will introduce new and significant employer obligations,” said Kerrie Adaway, Director and Owner of Lysander. “It will require employers to identify any hazards that pose a risk to psychological health, implement appropriate controls and report mental health incidents.”

To help the Southern Program Alliance members build awareness and kickstart compliance activities, Lysander will deliver two ‘Psychological Safety’ workshops. “The workshops are highly practical and have been designed to prepare participants on a senior executive level and a ‘whole of business’ level to identify and control psychosocial hazards in their workplace.”

Lysander will then deliver implementation support, centred around its integrated approach to employee wellness. “We will help leadership with health & safety development, with promoting positive mental health, and preventing mental injury and promoting a psychologically safe workplace,” explained Adaway.

The firm’s approach builds on Lysander’s 20+ years of experience in cultural change, and learnings gained from an industry-first pilot program specifically designed to support the construction industry’s mental health and wellbeing. The program was developed by Lysander in conjunction with Grant Fuller of McConnell Dowell and Associate Professor Luke Downey from Swinburne University.

“We are very supportive of the importance of (psychological) health and safety and look forward to seeing the results,” commented Annemarie Boicovitis, Transformation & People Alliance Manager at the Southern Program Alliance.

Across its five major programs, the Level Crossing Removal Project will also see the upgrade or building of more than 27 train stations, laying many kilometres of new track, and making associated rail improvements.