Research into the mental health and well-being of Fly-in-fly-out (FIFO) workers and their partners in Australia shows that they tend to experience difficulty adjusting between their work and private lives.
Workers say that time away from their families puts a strain on relationships, beyond just the feelings of loneliness, including frustration at missing out on family milestones or domestic emergencies.
The research, carried out by researchers from Kings College London and CQUniversity Australia, was published recently in the BMJ Open Medical Journal.
Researchers found that workers and partners generally felt unsupported in negotiating health and well-being problems and often due to the stigma surrounding mental health issues, some workers expressed concern that they would have a ‘black mark’ on their work record if they made use of the employer-provided support services.
Employers of FIFO workers should place more importance on good mental health and well-being, maintain transparency around potential hazards and offer workers the professional support they need to manage their different social roles and communicate effectively.