SOS Copper Coast

Suicide Prevention Network

It’s World Suicide Prevention Day

WORLD Suicide Prevention Day is today (Tuesday, September 10). Suicide is the leading cause of death for Australians aged 15 to 44 and preliminary data shows there were 3,128 deaths by suicide in Australia during 2017.

Australian Bureau of Statistics data show more people die from suicide than on our roads.

Men are three times more likely to suicide than women; however, during the past decade, there has been an increase in suicide deaths by females.

Yorke Peninsula’s two suicide prevention networks, SOS Copper Coast and SOS Yorke Peninsula, have been working hard to break the stigma and reduce suicide locally.

“Suicide prevention is about more than just mental ill-health.” SOS Copper Coast chairperson David Boots said. “Recently the ABS released a report which identified a personal history of self-harm, family disruption, relationship problems and economic problems as key psychological risk factors that could contribute to suicide. “Nobody is immune from the potential for suicide, but several sectors of the community are at higher risk.

“Isolated farmers, people identifying as LGBTQIA+, people from non-English speaking backgrounds and construction workers are examples of high-risk groups.”

R U really ok?

Mr. Boots said the community should work togethe ro prevent suicide. “You don’t need to be an expert to reach out – just a good friend and a great listener.” he said. “Simply showing concern when you realise a friend, family member or workmate is ‘not himself’ is a start.”

“Ask the obvious question, ‘R U OK?’ and you;re likely to get a response such as ‘Yes I’m fine’ but follow up with ‘Are you really okay?’

“People are less afraid to talk if you show genuine concern. Be prepared to ask if they are considering suicide, encourage them to talk about issues, let them know you care. Offer to assist them in getting help, such as talking them to a doctor or going to the hospital.

“It’s okay if you don’t have the answers, offer to investigate together – chat over a cuppa, offer to reconnect in the next day or so. It is better to reach out than avoid the person for fear of getting the conversation wrong.”

Walk with them

Experts generally agree asking someone whether they are thinking about suicide is unlikely to make the situation worse or “put ideas in their head” Mr. Boots said. “For many contemplating suicide, it’s not that they want to die, they just want their problems to go away” he said. “Don’t offer to do things for them – as an old saying goes, ‘don’t walk for them, walk with them’

“The SOS Copper Coast Suicide Prevention Network has flyers and booklets which are free to anyone who is concerned for another or wants to know how to support someone who has attempted to take their own life.

“Visit our stand at the forth-coming Yorke Peninsula Field Days, check out, find us on Facebook or email”

If you or someone you know needs urgent assistance contact Lifeline on 13 11 14.

In Photos: Stamping Out suicide… SOS Copper Coast founders, chairperson David Boots and deputy-chairperson Chris Walsh, display the group’s new vests and lifebuoys, which will be on display at upcoming events including the Yorke Peninsula Field Days. The group thanks Earle Signs for donating the signwriting.

Source: Published News Article –