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Island to introduce suicide prevention strategy

Wednesday, 8 March 2023

A Suicide Prevention Strategy, the first for the Island, has been published by Public Health. 

The strategy aims to reduce the number of suicides in the Isle of Man by building partnerships across society, providing more support to anyone experiencing a crisis, and improving training for communities, businesses and individuals to help spot when someone is struggling. 

The starting point of this strategy is that suicide is preventable with the right support and services in place. Based on the global ‘Zero suicide’ ambition, it is a long-term vision that starts with helping young people to develop the skills and resilience to deal with future hardships. 

There are 20 specific actions set out in the strategy, including to establish a network of people within our community who are dedicated to suicide prevention initiatives, and a review of personal, social, health and economic education in schools. 

The actions are split into five main themes; 

  • Partnership working: working closely with government departments, local communities and partners nationwide to establish a culture of learning and improvement
  • Intelligence: ensuring that the right data is collected and trends are monitored
  • Resilience/Awareness/Training: for the workforce and the general public
  • ‘Postvention’: support for friends, family and emergency services after a suicide
  • Safer care: getting the best care at the earliest opportunity 

Interim Director for Public Health, Professor Hugo van Woerden, said:

‘Joining the global ‘zero suicide’ movement shows our commitment towards saving every life, and makes sure that we learn from any losses that do occur- so that we as an Island are always learning and improving the support available to those vulnerable people in our society. We know that this strategy is bold and ambitious, but it sets out where we’d like to be. 

‘The actions in this strategy will also help move us closer to the Island plan vision of an Island of health and wellbeing, as we encourage all of our third sector partners and our local communities to help make sure that every person feels supported.’ 

The strategy has been developed by Public Health and the Suicide Prevention Group with input from stakeholders within Government and from the wider community. 

If you, or someone you know is struggling, please visit the suicide prevention strategy webpage for details of local organisations that provide advice and support in a time of need.

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