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ON THE ROAD NEWS

Van Excellence launches CALM solution for poor driver mental health

Dec 30, 2018
Did you know suicide is now the biggest killer of men under the age of 45 in the UK? Many of those who take their own lives struggle with mental health issues and suffer in silence for fear of isolation, ridicule or lack of support from those around them.
CALM van Van Excellence

To raise awareness of the issue and provide help and support for those who could be suffering, Van Excellence, an industry-led scheme promoting the safe and proper operation of vans, is launching a campaign in partnership with charity CALM (Campaign Against Living Miserably) to address the stigma around mental health and raise awareness of the resources available for men - many working as drivers - who could be uncertain of where to obtain help and advice.

Mark Cartwright, Head of Vans and Light Commercial Vehicles at the Freight Transport Association (FTA), which administers the scheme, explained why he launched the campaign. “When I heard suicide is now the biggest killer of men under 45, I was moved to take action. Van drivers often operate in highly pressured and lonely environments, and the combination of tight deadlines and isolation can lead to stress, exhaustion and poor nutrition. Too often, individuals suffer in silence and we hope this campaign will help overcome the stigma associated with this illness and provide much-needed support.”

With one in five van drivers describing their current mental health as poor or very poor, the scheme, which was launched at Fleet Live! on 8 October, will see vehicle hire and leasing companies offering support packs and information to all customers.

Simon Gunning, CEO of the Campaign Against Living Miserably (CALM) said, “The work Van Excellence are doing to support their drivers is outstanding and we’re delighted to be partnering with them. We believe the packs distributed to drivers will start plenty of conversations – some of which might just be lifesaving – so we’re proud to be getting the CALM message out across this community.”

Van Excellence is inviting all companies to sign up to the scheme; for more information please e-mail  info@vanexcellence.co.uk or call 03717 11 22 22. 

Photo: CALM van (Van Excellence)

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