News

Police support world suicide prevention day

10 Sep 2015 04:00 AM

badge-05_tcm4-91221 [View Full Size]

Northumbria Police is lending its support to raising awareness for World suicide prevention day, being held on Thursday, September 10. The World Health Organization (WHO) reports that every year, over 800,000 people die from suicide; around one death every 40 seconds

The initiative, led by the World Health Organisation and the International Association for Suicide Prevention, began in 2003. This year the theme is 'Preventing suicide: Reaching Out and Saving Lives'. It is estimated that during 2012 for each adult who died of suicide there were over 20 others who made suicide attempts.

Northumbria Police recognises the importance of supporting people with mental health issues through the introduction of the Street Triage Team, who work closely with operational officers responding to emergency calls from the public.

The team was introduced in 2014 and sees Northumberland, Tyne and Wear NHS Foundation Trust (NTW) working together with Northumbria Police to improve services for people experiencing mental health crisis.

Assistant Chief Constable Jo Farrell, of Northumbria Police said: "This world suicide prevention day highlights the work with vulnerable members of the public with mental health issues that police forces deal with on a daily basis. The work of our Street Triage Team literally reaches out to individuals who are in a crisis situation and ensures they receive the appropriate specialist help they need at that time. We know these interventions are making a real difference and will have helped people on the brink of despair.

"The work of the Street Triage Team is an excellent example of partner agencies working together to ensure those detained by officers and thought to have a mental health illness receive an enhanced service. By highlighting this issue on September 10 we want to encourage people to raise awareness of World suicide prevention day."

Northumbria Police and Crime Commissioner, Vera Baird, said: "Protecting those that are vulnerable in the community is a high priority for me. Mental health issues can affect anyone. Northumbria Police will continue to work closely with partners to support those who may need extra help.

"If you are concerned for the welfare of someone and believe that their life is in immediate danger, please contact the police who are fully trained to help and together with mental health workers can ensure the right support is received."

Find research relating to Reaching Out and Saving Lives, suicide prevention and mental health at https://www.iasp.info/resources/World_Suicide_Prevention_Day/2015/