Mental, News, Truckies’ health and wellbeing

Healthy Heads calls on transport industry to ask ‘are you OK?’

Healthy Heads in Trucks and Sheds is calling on the road transport, warehousing, and logistics industries to bring their teams together for a workplace event, focusing on the theme, “Ask R U OK? – No qualifications needed”. 

May 14, 2024 will mark the third year of R U OK? in Trucks & Sheds, an industry initiative dedicated to building a supportive workplace culture where colleagues feel confident looking out for each other. 

Naomi Frauenfelder, CEO of Healthy Heads in Trucks & Sheds, said that when asking for feedback from the industry, many people said they didn’t feel qualified enough to ask a colleague, “are you OK?”.  

“Our 2024 theme ‘Ask R U OK? – No qualifications needed’ aims to break through this stigma and reassure the road transport, warehousing, and logistics industries that you don’t need a qualification to check in with a colleague or friend,” she said.  

“We want to build confidence across our industries to ask, ‘Are you OK?’ every time we spot the signs a workmate might be struggling.” 

Distribution Centre Manager at Coles, Vikki Venables, shared her experience of a life-changing “R U OK?” conversation.

“One day, I got a phone call from my manager saying that a colleague didn’t seem like himself,” she said. 

“I reached out, and he opened up to me that he had a plan to end his life that night.  

“Together, we called the hospital, arranged for him to be with someone that night, and made an appointment for the next day.” 

Venerables said that management arranged for her colleague to have some time off work so he could focus on his mental health.  

“I checked in with him once a week to see how he was going,” she continued. 

“When he returned to work a few months later, he thanked me for saving his life.”  

R U OK? CEO Katherine Newton said that if you think a colleague might be struggling, you should make an effort to check in with them.  

“We know in these industries, colleagues might not always be alongside each other, you might find yourself working different shifts, or you operate as an independent truck driver, but we can still cast our minds to what might be going on for our work mates,” she said.  

“If you spot changes to their behaviour or routine, or you get that gut feeling something might be going on in their world, make the time to check in with them and to really listen.  

“Our research shows showing genuine interest and concern when asking R U OK? is the most important factor in helping people feel safe to open up.” 

Visit for FREE resources to help you have an R U OK? conversation and plan your R U OK? in Trucks & Sheds activities. 

If you or someone you know needs extra support, contact information for national support and services is available at 

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