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Welcome to Boom Goes The Stigma! BGTS is a production of the Construction Suicide Prevention Partnership (CSPP). According to the CDC, the construction industry has the second-highest rate of suicide and has one of the highest rates of death from overdoses. Our country loses more construction workers to suicide than to Jobsite injuries or accidents. BGTS is a tool that normalizes and elevates the conversation around mental health. On every episode, guests from within and outside the construction industry discuss critical issues, share stories, and, most importantly, blow up the stigma of talking about mental wellness as a sign of weakness.

All of our episodes are on this page, we hope they inform and inspire your efforts to raise awareness and save lives!

Season 2 Trailer:

The Construction Suicide Prevention Partnership crew has wrapped up recording our next series of podcasts! In this teaser, you will get caught up on what we have been doing since our last season ended and what we have in the hopper moving forward.

Season 2 Episode 1: Constructing Hope

We are excited to share our conversation with Pat Daniels, the Founder and Executive Director of Constructing Hope.

Constructing Hope’s mission is to rebuild the lives of people in the Portland community by encouraging self-sufficiency through skills training and education in the construction industry. Constructing Hope provides no-cost, ten-week construction training programs, placement services, and career advancement to low-income people of color, youth, and formerly incarcerated people connected to careers in the construction industry.

Season 2 Episode 2: Painting a New Perspective on Suicide Prevention

We are excited to share our conversation with Hunter Moen. Our long-time listeners will remember that Hunter conceived and is one of the original hosts of Boom Goes the Stigma. Hunter is now the QPR training specialist at Lines for Life. QPR (Question, Persuade, and Refer) is an evidence-based suicide prevention training program.

Season 2 Episode 3: Making Things a Little Bit Better

We are excited to share our conversation with Christi Pilutik. Christi is the founder and president of ALTA Consulting. Coming from a long line of construction professionals, she has an intimate knowledge of the unique challenges facing the construction community, including their families, and what it needs to thrive.    

Season 2 Episode 4: Supportive Supervision

We are excited to share our conversation with Dr. Leslie Hammer. Dr. Hammer specializes in the effects of workplace conditions, including supportive supervision at work and occupational stress, on workplace mental health and well-being

Season 2 Episode 5: Got GUTS? Building Space for Mental Wellness

We are excited to share our conversation with Adam Garske. Adam Garske is a Project Engineer for Hoffman Construction and the Chairman of the Resource Technology subcommittee within their wellness task force.

Season 2 Episode 6: Rethink the Drink

We are excited to share our conversation with Rebecca Garza. Rebecca is a Health Promotion Strategist at the Oregon Health Authority. She supports strategic communications and mobilization initiatives and is the lead for the Rethink the Drink(RTD) brand. Rebecca earned a Master of Science in Medical Anthropology and Cross-Cultural Practice at Boston University School of Medicine.

Season 2 Episode 7: Reality Check

We are thrilled to share our conversation with George Carrillo. George was the former Executive Director of LatinoBuilt. He is now the Chief Executive Officer of the National Hispanic Construction Alliance. He is a staunch advocate for diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI) with deep expertise in labor relations and union contracts. He works to challenge inequitable policies and actively dismantle institutional norms through strong alliances with community-based organizations and state legislature to advocate for social justice and equitable representation.

Season 2 Episode 8: Forging A New Perspective

We are thrilled to share our dynamic conversation with Paul Diaz. Paul is a Business Representative with Iron Workers Local 29. With nearly twenty years of experience in ironwork, Paul brings a fascinating, heartfelt, and engaging perspective to mental wellness and suicide prevention.

Season 1 Trailer:

Boom Goes The Stigma is back! Here is a teaser of what is in store for the upcoming season!

Season 1 | Episode 1 Tapping Into New Pathways

We are excited to share our conversation with Kristina Ewing from Andersen Construction. She discussed the evolving mindset in construction, shared alternative avenues for delivering suicide prevention on the job site, and provided insight on how to embed suicide prevention into the workplace culture.

Kristina is a founding member of the CSPP and helped craft our Action Guide. She brings a unique approach to suicide prevention and mental well-being space.

Season 1 | Episode 2 Being There

In this episode, we spoke with Steve Frost. We had an expansive conversation about connecting construction with responsive resources, building a culture of care, and creating diverse training modules. Steve is a founding member of the CSPP. He helped write our action guide and is our QPR(Question Persuade Refer) liaison.

Season 1| Episode 3 Resiliency Required

We are excited to share our conversation with Crystal Larson. Crystal manages Lines For Life’s Community Training Program and has been instrumental in implementing QPR (Question, Persuade, and Refer), an evidence-based suicide prevention training program, within the construction industry.Crystal brings an authentic, humorous, and practical viewpoint to suicide prevention training. We talk about overcoming the eye rolls, planting seeds of hope, and creating additional mental health training modules that reflect the resiliency of the construction industry.

Season 1| Episode 4: Compassion, Love, and Science: Responding to the on-the-ground impact of the opioid crisis.

We are excited to share our conversation with Dr. Nabarun Dasgupta. Dr. Dasgupta is a scientist at the Opioid Data Lab at the University of North Carolina with two decades of experience in overdose epidemiology and prevention. Through his unique research approach and ability to tell true stories about health with data and compassion, Dr. Dasupta has become a national leader in reconfiguring how our country addresses the opioid crisis. 

Season 1| Episode 5: Keeping it Simple

We are excited to share our conversation with Mike Ellis and Barte Hess from Apollo Mechanical Contractors As safety manager for Apollo Mechanical, Mike has developed, taught, and implemented world-class safety programs, leading Apollo to receive numerous site safety awards for injury-free work environments. Barte is Apollo’s Division Health and Safety Manager. He’s a husband, dad, and all-around fix-it guy. In his spare time, he restores hot rod cars and plays music.

We enjoyed talking and hearing stories about how their pragmatic approach to psychological safety and total worker health is transforming the construction industry. Prioritizing mental wellness does not have to be complicated; sometimes simplicity is the innovation!

Season 1| Episode 6: Horizontal Thinking: The Road Forward

We are excited to share our conversation with John Hickey, the Executive Director of the Asphalt Pavement Association of Oregon.  

 In leading the Asphalt Pavement Association, John focuses on maintaining a culture of continuous improvement in the paving industry – which requires working on diverse issues such as pavement design and research, recruiting the next generation of workers, infrastructure funding, and, of course, safety.   

In our conversation, John highlighted the unique challenges facing “horizontal construction.” We discussed how new and potential policies and practices can improve the industry. We learned the excellent benefits of a job in the pavement industry. We appreciate John taking the time to talk to us!

Season 1 | Episode 7: An International Perspective: Construction Suicide Prevention in New Zealand

We are excited to share our conversation with Dr. Andy Walmsley from Building Wellness, a nonprofit in New Zealand that focuses on supporting mental well-being and reducing suicide rates in the construction industry. In our conversation, Andy talked about the challenges the construction workforce in New Zealand faces and how their organization operates to meet their needs. We appreciate Andy taking the time to talk to us!  

Season 1 | Episode 8:

Here is our season one finale episode of Boom Goes the Stigma! We are excited to share our conversation with Dr. John W. McIlvee. Dr. Mcllvee serves as the State Opioid Treatment Authority (SOTA) for the State of Oregon and is the manager of the Healthcare Professionals Service Program (HPSP).

The Pilot Series

Pilot Trailer

Pilot Episode #1 Flower Power

CSPP talked with Morgan Kellow, an HR coordinator at a large general contractor construction company in Oregon and a member of the Construction Suicide Prevention Partnership (CSPP). We discussed some of the changes in the construction industry around mental health, the importance of language, and staying true to who you are.

Pilot Episode #2 Embedding the Message

CSPP has an engaging conversation with Natalie Cordova, Vice President of Construction Risk Practice at Marsh and a Construction Suicide Prevention Partnership (CSPP) Outreach and Engagement Committee Member. We discussed the importance of community, normalizing mental health conversations, and the value of branding and messaging.

Pilot Episode #3 Texas-Sized Joy

We talked with Michael Hawes, the executive director for the Pacific Northwest Carpenters Institute (PNCI). We discussed how he has transformed prevention ideas into action that transcend stigma to create a safer and more positive work environment.

Pilot Episode #4 Keeping the Conversation Going!

Welcome to our season finale! Max, Anna, and Hunter held a roundtable discussion reflecting on the podcast project. Our discussion included initial inspiration for the show and how we can continue to expand this work.