Suicide Prevention Day 2022
Every year, organisations and communities worldwide come together to raise awareness of how we can create a world where fewer people die by suicide.
The latest suicide statistics showed that in 2018, in the UK and the Republic of Ireland, more than 6,800 people died by suicide. Every life lost to suicide is a tragedy.
And we know that suicide is preventable, it’s not inevitable.
But not being OK is still widely stigmatised. And governments can still make better, more ambitious plans to prevent suicide.
Every year the samaritans campaign with over 70 other suicide prevention and mental health groups under the National Suicide Prevention Alliance (NSPA). Together, we ask governments in the UK and Ireland to make suicide prevention a priority.
Advance Union also raises awareness about Samaritans and suicide prevention and provides tips on better care for yourself and others. This World Suicide Prevention Day, if you’re worried someone might be experiencing suicidal thoughts – we encourage you to ask them directly.
Asking someone if they’re suicidal won’t make things worse. Evidence shows it could protect them.
If someone is feeling suicidal, it might be hard to get through to them. They might be distant or distracted or feel disconnected from the world and their own emotions. They might not respond right away. But asking someone directly if they’re having suicidal thoughts allows them to tell you how they feel.
If someone does tell you they are having suicidal thoughts, always take them seriously. You don’t have to be an expert; being there to listen and showing you care can help them work through what’s happening. Let them know they’re not a burden, and there’s always someone they can turn to – a family member, friend, or a 24/7 helpline like Samaritans.
It’s OK to ask about suicidal thoughts. It could save a life.
Advance union can sometimes be an initial port of call for members who feel suicidal, and it’s okay as we can help get them signposted to the proper support. Look after each other and watch out for anyone who might be worried about and ask.