Call to tackle high rate of suicide
The high rate of suicide in the UK has been highlighted by the publication of a report by the Parliamentary Health Select Committee calling for a better government strategy for suicide prevention. Turning Point, a social enterprise which works with vulnerable people often at risk of committing suicide, issued the following statement by their managing director for mental health, John Campbell. The Sanctuary Service, Turning Point’s mental health crisis service, is based in Hastings.
“Today’s interim report into suicide prevention by the Health Select Committee raises a number of issues that need addressing as quickly as possible if we are to confront the growing number of suicides in the UK.
“Suicide is preventable, but only if the support networks and services are there for people to fall back on. Unfortunately, the support that people have relied on in the past has been affected by funding pressures faced by Local Authorities in conjunction with a lack of funding increases for mental health services.
“What struck me most about today’s report are the economic issues as both a cause and result of suicide. Firstly, the report highlights a greater occurrence of suicide within deprived communities, suggesting that poverty and financial hardship are leading more people to suicide.
“In addition to this, the report states that the cost to the economy is around £1.67 million for every life lost to suicide. With over 6,000 suicides in the UK in 2015 alone, this is a total cost of over £10 billion – therefore investment in extending access to early intervention and crisis support particularly targeted at those more vulnerable would save money as well as lives.
“When faced with this, it is important that people are aware of the support they can access if they are experiencing suicidal ideations and other mental health issues.”
Turning Point’s mental health crisis service, the Sanctuary Service, can be contacted here.
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