The suicide prevention strategy: what we think
Posted Monday 10 September 2012
“We welcome the launch of this important strategy. We are pleased to see a renewed commitment from government to reduce the number of suicides and to provide better support for those bereaved by suicide.
For those left behind when someone takes their own life, the question is almost always ‘why?’ and often we find that people have been struggling with either a known or undiagnosed mental health problem. The previous suicide prevention strategy, launched a decade ago, has made great strides in reducing overall suicide rates by targeting those known to be at risk. The new strategy will play a crucial part in encouraging people to come forward and seek help before they reach a point where suicide seems to be the only option.
People affected by suicide have told us that better support is essential to preventing people reaching crisis point. Suicide training for GPs, as well as wider and faster access to talking therapies and better access to early intervention services, would go a long way to addressing this. We want to see these sorts of measures put in place as a matter of priority.
As with all strategies, the real value comes with implementation. The funding pledged for research is a vital contribution, however at a time when there are cuts to health services, we would strongly urge the government to invest in the services it expects to deliver this strategy. In addition, as our new health minister has today acknowledged, suicide prevention is everyone’s business, so we need to see a real commitment from all government departments in supporting those at risk.
Together with Samaritans, Mind is one of 50 organisations that have joined together to deliver a long-term, coordinated programme of activity to support the strategy. We will share best practice, increase uptake of suicide prevention training and raise awareness of suicide prevention to reach those at risk.”
Paul Farmer, Mind CEO.
When you're struggling with suicidal feelings, it can be really hard to know where to turn. We have some resources which may help:
- Booklets for people who are having suicidal thoughts or who are supporting someone with suicidal thoughts can be found on our website
- The Samaritans Run a 24-hour helpline on 08457 90 90 90. Mind runs an Infoline on 0300 123 3393
- Mind also runs a peer-support network, the Elephant in the Room, via Facebook.
We believe no one should have to face a mental health problem alone, contact your local Mind for advice and support on suicidal thoughts.