Towards an Evidence-Based Model of Workplace Postvention

Int J Environ Res Public Health. 2022 Dec 22;20(1):142. doi: 10.3390/ijerph20010142.


This instrumental case study explored what suicide postvention might offer workplaces using the example of a large metropolitan funeral company. A mixed methods approach was utilized to examine staff experiences with suicide bereavement funerals and responses to a bespoke postvention training package. Staff found funerals due to suicide difficult in terms of communication, engagement and emotionality. These challenges were commonly characterized by increased tension and concern. In the absence of a postvention informed approach, staff had developed individual ways to negotiate the identified challenges of this work. The introduction of a staff-informed postvention training package delivered improvements in staff confidence with communication, understanding and management of the impact of suicide bereavement, and increased willingness to share information about postvention services with families and mourners. The findings indicated that benefits of the training could be extended through organizational governance and integration of supports. The findings are used to inform a model of workplace postvention together with a methodology incorporating staff experience and organizational context.

Keywords: bereavement; funerals; health and safety; postvention; suicide; workplaces.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Bereavement*
  • Communication
  • Grief
  • Humans
  • Suicide*
  • Workplace

Grants and funding

This research was supported by an Australian Government Research Training Program (RTP) Scholarship.