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BeSAFE International Farm Safety & Farmer Health Conference - 2023

August 23rd to August 25th  - Teagasc, Grange, Dunsany, Co. Meath. C15 PW93 and Teagasc, Ashtown, Dublin 15, D15 KN3K

Conference Programme

August 23rd, Teagasc, Grange, Co. Meath - Theme: From research to farm practice

09:00 – 09:10 - Scene Setting – working together for safer farms - Dr David Meredith, Conference Chair
09:10 - 09:20 - Welcome to Teagasc Grange - Dr Paul Crossan
09:20 - 09:30 - Welcome: Prof Pat Dillon - Prof Pat Dillon
09:30 - 09:45 - Conference opening - Minister Martin Heydon
09:45 - 11:00 - Keynote: Human behaviour: The black box of injury prevention followed by panel discussion - Prof Julie A. Sorensen
11:00 - 11:20 - Coffee

Session 1: From research to practice 1 - Chair: Dr John McNamara

11:20 - 11:40 - Tractor Safety - Practical training demonstration - Mr Francis Bligh
11:40 - 12:00 - The Feasibility, Fidelity and Acceptability a Behaviour Change Intervention Targeting Tractor Safety Among Irish Farmers - Ms Aswathi Surendran
12:00 - 12:20 - Understanding farm advisor’s intensions towards farm health and safety extension activities - Dr Mohammad Mohammdrezaei
12:20 - 12:40 - Distribution of time of calving in the suckler cow herd - Ms Noeleen Brereton
12:40 - 13:00 - Quad Helmet Testing – the Australian experience - Mr David Robertson
13:00 - 13:20 - Discussion
13:20 - 14:00 - Lunch                                                                              

Session 2: From research to practice 2. Chair: Dr Pam Milkovich

14:00 - 14:20 - Peer support and knowledge exchange for farm safety and health promotion - Dr Tracey O'Connor
14:20 - 14:40 - Farmer and Advisor Engagement in Occupational Health and Safety - Ms Penny Gavin
14:40 - 15:00 - Co-designing a livestock safety programme with and for farm advisors and farmers - Mr Ciaran Kinahan
15:00 - 15:20 - Discussion
15:20 - 15:30 - Coffee Break
15:30 - 16:10 - Poster Session

Session 3: Culture and Practice. Chair: Prof. Stephan Van den Broucke

16:10 - 16:30 - Socialisation of risk taking amongst farm Understanding culture: Farm households and farm safety - Prof Sally Shortall
16:30 - 16:50 - Workplace Culture and Promoting Adaptable Change in AgFF Operations - Dr Amanda Roome
16:50 - 17:10 - Nudging Our Way to More Effective Agricultural Health and Safety Solutions - Prof Julie Sorensen
17:10 - 17:30 - Discussion

August 24th, Backweston Laboratory Campus and Teagasc Ashtown Campus Themes: Policy and Safety Cultures

Session 1: Policy, Research and Practice. Chair: David Meredith

09:30 - 09:50 - Supporting farm safety through policy and research - Mr John Canny, Dept of Agriculture, Food and the Marine
09:50 - 10:10 - Regulation, Partnership and Research - Mr Pat Griffin, Health and Safety Authority 10:10 - 10:20 - Discussion
10:30 - 11:10 - Tour of facilities 
11.10 - 11.30 - Coffee 

Session 2: Policy Perspectives on Farm Health and Safety. Chair: John Canny

11:30 - 11:50 - Leveraging Partnerships and Social Responsibility to Implement a National ROPS Rebate Program in the United States - Dr Pamela J. Milkovich
11:50 - 12:10 - Informal and formal social support available to injured and ill farmers - Dr Majda Černič Istenič 
12:10 - 12:30 - A Look at Entrepreneurship in Farmworker Safety - Dr Pamela J. Milkovich
12:10 - 12:50 - Discussion
12:50 - 14:15 - Travel to Ashtown and Lunch

Session 3: Doing Farm Safety - Understanding and shaping 'farm safety culture'. Chair: Pat Griffin 

14:15 - 14:25 -  AgInjuryNews in 2023: An Overview of Available Data, Collaborations, Usage and Outputs - Dr Bryan Weichelt
14:25 - 14:45 - Examining the Many Facets of Agricultural Injury Burden: Results from a Scoping Review - Dr Erika Scott
14:45 - 15:05 - The Application of Common Accident Causation Theories to Irish Agriculture - Ms Carolyn Scott
15:05 - 15:25 - Farmers Have Hearts - Cardiovascular Health Programme: a ‘real-world’ approach to advancing cardiovascular health in male livestock farmers - Dr Diana Van Doorn 
15:25 - 15:45 - Discussion

August 25th, Teagasc Ashtown Campus: Themes: Farmer Health and Wellbeing

Session 1: Farmers, Stressors and Stress 1. Chair: Prof Alison Kennedy

09:30 - 10:00 - Keynote: Farmers psychosocial working conditions and mental health - international perspectives - Prof Peter Lundqvist
10:30 - 10:50 - Discussion
10:20 - 10:40 - Weather, workload and money: Determining and evaluating sources of stress for farmers in Ireland - Dr Mary Brennan
10:40 - 11:00 - Psychosocial risks of farmers and farmworkers and their vulnerability to excessive stress, absenteeism, presenteeism, and turnover - Dr Nataša Dernovšček Hafner
11:00- 11:20 - Coffee
11:20 - 12:40 - Keynote: Supporting farmer's health and wellbeing - Dr Alison Kennedy
Chair: Prof Sally Shortall - Panel Discussion
12:40 - 13.40 - Lunch

Session 2: Farmers, Stressors and Stress 2. Chair: Dr Diana Van Doorn

13:40 - 14:00 - Bridging Differences between Faith and Behavioral Health Professionals:Using Intergroup Dialogue to Improve Agricultural Mental Health Systems - Dr Lorann Stallones
14:00 - 14:20 - Sense of Place: The Central Role of Livestock Marts in rolling out the ‘Farmer’s Yards’, Social Initiative for the Farming Community - Dr Shane Conway
14:20 - 14:40 - Community-Based Approach to Farm Health, Safety and Wellbeing Training for Farmers using a Theatre-Based Behaviour Change Intervention - Dr Sinead Flannery
14:40 - 15:00 - Discussion
15:00 - 15:20 - Coffee

Session 3: Farmers, Stressors and Stress 3. Chair: Dr Sinead Flannery

15:20 - 15:40 - Farm Adolescent and Adult Mental Health - Dr Josie M. Rudolphi
15:40 - 16:00 - Mental Health and Suicide Among Irish Farmers: Risk Factors and Intervention Acceptability - Dr Tomas Russell
16:00 - 16:20 - Irish Farmers’ Mental Health Help-Seeking: Barriers and Facilitators - Dr Joseph Firnhaber
16:20 - 16:40 - Discussion
16:40 – 16:50 - Closing Address Dr David Meredith, Conference Chairperson

BeSafe National Farm Safety Conference 2022

Understanding farmer health and safety behaviours - Supporting social sustainability of farming in Ireland

23rd November, 2022. 10:00 – 13:00, Teagasc, Ashtown, Dublin 15.

Speakers at the BeSafe National Farm Safety Conference with the Minister for Farm Safety.

From Left: Dr David Meredith (Teagasc, BeSafe Principal Investigator); Minister Martin Heydon, TD; Dr John McNamara (Teagasc); Mr Alexis O’Reilly (Maynooth University); Dr Claire Jack (AFBI); Dr Mohammad Mohammadrezaei (Teagasc).


Press Releases:

Minister Heydon launches Managing Farm Safety and Health Video series. 

57% of Farmers found to engage in unsafe farming practices. 

Farm Safety BeSafe Conference. 


Securing Farmer Wellbeing: Supporting the Social Sustainability of Farming

  • Prof David Christine Rose, Reading University, will present the results of a recently completed study entitled: ‘Landscapes of support for farming mental health in the UK’: Dr David Rose (presentation)
  • "Theatre: A unique educational approach to farm health, safety, and wellbeing training for farmers" by Dr Sinéad Flannery: Dr Sinead Flannary
  • "Weather, Workload and Money: Determining and evaluating sources of stress for farmers in Ireland" by Dr Mary Brennan et al: Dr Mary Brennan - Teagasc-UCC
  • "Snapshots of Farmer Wellbeing from the Farmers Have Hearts Cardiovascular Health Programme" by Ms Diana Van Doorn: Diana Van Doorn - Teagasc-SETU
  • "Mental Health Help-seeking in Irish Farmers" by Dr Anna Donnla O’Hagan et al: Donnla O'Hagan DCU
  • "On FeirmGround’ – Supporting Farmer Well-being" by Mr Conor Hammersley: Conor Hammersley - Teagasc-SETU
  • "Farmers and their wellbeing during Irelands COVID-19 crisis" by Mr Alexis O’Reilly et al: Alexis O'Reilly - Teagasc- Maynooth Uni
  • "An Investigation into the Relationship Between Social Support, Stress and Psychological Well-Being in Farmers" by Ms Avril Deegan and Dr Simon Dunne: Avril Deegan - DCU
  • "Dying to Farm: Developing a Suicide Prevention Intervention for Farmers in Ireland" Dr Anne Markey et al: Anne Markey UCD


Speakers at the Teagasc BeSafe Seminar on Farmer Wellbeing

From Right to Left: Dr Sinead Flannery, Prof David Rose, Dr Donnla O’Hagan, Dr David Meredith, Mr Alexis O’Reilly, Dr Mary Brennan, Ms Avril Deegan, Mr Conor Hammersley, (Missing – Dr Anne Markey)

Photo Credit: Mr Pat Griffin, Health and Safety Authority

BeSafe International Seminar

BeSafe Seminar

Towards a better understanding of farm safety and farmer health 

Ashtown, Dublin 15. January 31st 

Globally, accidents and fatalities are a persistent feature of farming occupations. In Ireland farming is the most dangerous occupation and accounts for the largest number of work-place fatalities annually. A variety of public and private initiatives have been developed and implemented with the objective of reducing the risks to farm families and workers. This workshop, organised as part of the Behaviours for Safe Farming (BeSAFE) project, brings together researchers, policy stakeholders and knowledge transfer specialists to outline recent and on-going research assessing and evaluating these initiatives. The objective of the workshop is to identify areas for collaboration on on-going or new research by highlighting issues that need to be taken into consideration by stakeholders concerned with farm safety.Whilst the workshop focuses on providing an overview of recent and on-going intra-disciplinary research and collaboration between research and knowledge transfer specialists, key international speakers will provide insights from research in the UK. Prof. Sally Shortall (Newcastle University) will outline the importance of understanding the wider socio-cultural context of safety and Ms. Ilinca Tone (University of Aberdeen) on the use of and effectiveness of tools to assist farmers assess the relative safety of workplace tasks.


10.00: Welcome

10.10: Scene setting: Overview of farm safety in Ireland - David Meredith (Behaviours for Safer Farming); Francis Bligh(Safe Scene). 

10.20: Prof. Sally Shortall, Newcastle University: Normalising danger on the farm within the farm family.

10.50: Ms Ilinca Tone, Aberdeen University: Improving farm safety, one task at a time. Presentation2

11.15: Ms Diana von Doorn, Carlow Institute of Technology and Teagasc Rural Economy Development Programme: Understanding the health status of farmers in Ireland.Farmers have hearts

11.35: Break

11.45: Ms Niamh Woods, University College Dublin and Teagasc Livestock Research Programme: Human – Animal Relations, a key to safety.Ms Niamh Woods

12.00: Round table – Chaired by John McNamara:

Overview of recent and on-going research in Ireland and internationally

13.45: Group discussion: Supporting wellbeing within the farming community

Potential themes: Farm safety, behaviours, health, wellbeing, services, supports, initiatives

15: Feedback, key issues and wrap-up