Judy Darcy, Minister of Mental Health and Addictions, has issued the following statement regarding two days that help bring attention to suicide prevention: Benefit for Life Day for positive mental health on Sept. 9, followed by World Suicide Prevention Day on Sept. 10.
“About 11 people today will end their lives by suicide in Canada. Each year in British Columbia, more than 500 people, about 75% of them male, will take their own lives. Suicide is the second leading cause of death for young people between the ages of 15 and 24 years. Their deaths leave behind love ones and communities to grieve the devastating loss.
“These two days are a time to remember loved ones who have died by suicide and to show your support and compassion for those who have been touched by these tragedies. It’s also a time for us to commit to ensuring that services and supports are there for people when they need them.
“Suicide is a heart-breaking reality in communities throughout the province. It happens across all ages, in every type of family, and Indigenous people are twice as likely to die from suicide as non-Indigenous people. The effects of colonization and forced assimilation have had lasting negative effects on Indigenous people, effects that are passed on from one generation to the next.
“The theme of World Suicide Prevention Day is ‘take a minute, change a life.’ I encourage all British Columbians to take a minute to think of those around us who may be struggling – our family members, friends, neighbours and coworkers – and to take the time to connect, listen, and most importantly, show that you care.
“I also encourage you to help bring suicide out of the shadows and commit to eliminating the stigma attached to mental illness that prevents people from seeking help. If you or someone you know is contemplating taking their own life, reach out to them and help them find a way out. Talk to your local crisis line right away. Call 1 800 SUICIDE from anywhere in B.C. “
You can find information on suicide and self-harm at: http://www2.gov.bc.ca/gov/content/mental-health-support-in-bc/suicide-and-self-harm
Media RelationsMinistry of Mental Health and Addictions