COVID-19 Support | Mates in Construction NZ
Need help now? 0800 111 315 or free text 5353



As events change across our country due to the effects of Coronavirus, some impact may be felt across the construction industry resulting from changes to work and physical distancing.

We will continue to provide Case Management support on 0800 111 315.  Please contact your local Field Officer or the MATES office should you wish to discuss available options.

MATES has put together some useful resources that you can print and have on your site. We will continue to update these resources so please check back.

returning to work at Level 3

PDF Induction Guide with downloadable resources for use on site.  Powerpoint and video presentation also available.


Covid-19 support for employers and contractors.

COVID-19 and working at the current alert level

Up to date Health and Safety protocols for working at Level 2

official information

This website has everything you need to know about COVID-19 in one place. Learn the simple steps you can take to unite against the virus and slow its spread. Find out what help is available and get the latest updates. 

Coronavirus (COVID-19) and the workplace

Guidance for employees, employers and businesses, and financial support including the Wage Subsidy and Leave Payment schemes.


Our Field Officers have got some great tips to help you with the issues you might be facing during lockdown.

Suicide Prevention in Construction | MATES in Construction

How are you managing your daily routine and sleeping patterns?

Suicide Prevention in Construction | MATES in Construction

What do you do when you are feeling angry?

Suicide Prevention in Construction | MATES in Construction

What do you do when you are feeling stressed?

Suicide Prevention in Construction | MATES in Construction

What I do if I’m feeling lonely?

Suicide Prevention in Construction | MATES in Construction

How do you manage your drinking through this time?

Suicide Prevention in Construction | MATES in Construction

Providing for family - what help is there?

Suicide Prevention in Construction | MATES in Construction

Where can I go for financial assistance?


Join Slade McFarland for daily lockdown tips –  subscribe to our YouTube channel for updates!


Working from Home 


Boxing with Slade


Boxing again!


Shopping Trip


Fishing Trip


Washing Up





DAY 10

Sad Takeaways

DAY 11

Soph’s French Day

DAY 12

Neighbours Day

Q&A with uncle slade

Field Officer Slade answers some common questions about returning to work.

Got a question for us?  Send it through here.

What if someone else on site isn’t following the rules around COVID-19?

Dob them in (not the best way to go about it, but it is a last resort).

Speaking to them calmly and reminding the of reason we have these precautions in place.

What if all this Covid-19 shit is starting to impact on my mental health and wellbeing – what can I do?

It is OK to feel vulnerable and overwhelmed as we read news about the outbreak. It’s important to acknowledge these feelings and there is more information on the Ministry of Health website.

You can also hop onto the MATES website for resources or you can join a Lunch Room chat or alternatively call the 0800 111 315 to talk to us directly.

What if I don’t feel safe returning to work because I have a family at home, and I am worried that I could contaminate them?

It is normal to feel fear – it’s okay.  But – it is important to find the right information, so you feel in control to deal with the new procedure of conduct in your work.

Look at the procedure from your company’s Health and Safety Policy for working in confined areas during COVID-19, as structures of engagement may or will change.

What should I do if I feel exhausted?

This is a hugely stressful time and many people will be working long hours and struggling to sleep. It’s vital to keep hydrated and well fed, and get the rest you need, and your team and employer should be doing what they can to support you with this.

What can I do if I feel overwhelmed?

We are in unprecedented and frightening times. It is okay not to feel okay. 

You might find it helpful to turn off news alerts and just get news once a day from a trusted source.

There are people that can help you – call MATES for a chat on 0800 111 315

How can I help my colleagues?

Regularly check in with your mates on site to see how they are feeling and let them know that they have your support. You could consider setting up a buddy system for each shift, which pairs experienced with less experienced team members so people can keep an eye on each other and support each other to take their breaks.  Remembering physical distancing of course.

If you think that a colleague is too tired to drive home, make sure you discuss your concerns with them before they leave – there may be an alternative, safer way for them to trave.  

Make sure you all carry on regular team debriefs. Don’t forget to thank yourselves and each other for supporting our communities, celebrate successes, and provide a wellbeing safety net.  

What happens if a workmate tests positive to the virus?

If a person tests positive, then express sympathy. As you talk with them, clearly communicate that they can count on you and the team to be supportive.

Connect with your HR partner. You need to act quickly to minimise the risk of the disease spreading.

As an employer, at a minimum you will need to ask the employee which co-workers they have been in “close contact” with during the prior two weeks.

As an employer you will be instructed on the next steps you should take to protect your employees.

If I am in lockdown again, what about my wages?

Lockdown again could be a great possibility depending if the virus breakout happens again. If it does happen and you need help visit the Work and Income website for information on the wage subsidy.

What will PPE look like when we go back to site?

Your employer will provide you with all the PPE you need and also what you need to do onsite.

What is physical distancing?

The evidence suggests that COVID-19 is spread via respiratory droplets from contact transmission. People need to keep at least a 2 metre distance from others as a precautionary approach. If you can’t maintain physical distancing because you need close contact you should speak to your supervisor.

Please follow any new procedures that may arise with your Health and Safety Executives for your company and remember to look after your own self care too.

Suicide Prevention in Construction | MATES in Construction

The Lunch Room is open to everyone in the Construction Industry looking to get together with your mates for a chat during the Covid-19 crisis.

Join us for support, information and kōrero during this uncertain time.  Meetings are available daily 10:30am–11:30am, and its very easy to join. All you need to do is hit the register now button and select a time. The group will be meeting online via Zoom.

Suicide Prevention in Construction | MATES in Construction