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Young Suicide highest in 10 years

4th October 2016

Suicide Prevention Charity calls for urgent Government action

10 October is World Mental Health Day

4 October 2016 – Latest suicide statistics* highlight young suicide in the UK at its highest for the past 10 years. In 2015 1,659 young people under 35 years took their own lives; an increase of 103 more than in 2014 and 58 above the previous highest recorded figure (1,631 in 2011).

“Suicide is the biggest killer of young people in the UK. It is a national crisis that can no longer be ignored,” said Ged Flynn, chief executive of national charity PAPYRUS Prevention of Young Suicide.

“Theresa May, on the steps of 10 Downing Street, promised much in her opening remarks as Prime Minister regarding mental health. She must now make this a top priority and demonstrate her personal commitment to saving young lives.

“We can think of nothing more important than stopping young people killing themselves. Surely it is the primary duty of any government to protect the public.

“Many parents who are part of PAPYRUS have lost children to suicide, often finding out only after the young person’s death that services provided to their child were inadequate. Many feel they are parenting in the dark, unable to find information from clinicians and other services.

“PAPYRUS wants all political parties to signal their commitment to reducing young suicides and to make it a priority. Otherwise young people and those who care for them are being badly let down and left at further risk.

Escalating numbers of calls, texts and emails made to PAPYRUS HOPELineUK helpline services from young people across the UK show that many feel let down by mental health services. Many say they are unable to share their emotional pain.

‘I can’t get support because of my history with suicide attempts’; ‘I’m told my needs are too complex for treatment’; ‘I’ve been to my doctor for assessments, been to A&E after attempting suicide, but have not yet been assessed or offered any support from mental health services’, are typical anxieties of distressed young callers seeking help because they feel at risk of suicide but do not want to die.

*Office for National Statistics Statistical Bulletin: Suicides in England and Wales: 2015 Registrations Nicva: Quarterly and Annual Suicide Statistics for Northern Ireland: 2015 Registrations ScotPho: Suicide data introduction: 2015 Registrations


PAPYRUS was founded in 1997 by a group of parents who had a lost a child through suicide: parents determined to do everything possible to save other families and young people from a similar fate.

The charity’s HOPELineUK helpline servicesprovide a unique service in the UK for young people themselves and those concerned about them - to speak confidentially to its team of trained professionals for practical advice and support. Telephone 0800 068 41 41 text 07786 209 697 or email pat@papyrus-uk.org

Editorial contact for more information Rosemary Vaux PAPYRUS press office direct line 020 8943 5343 mobile 07792 72 62 41


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Suicide is the biggest killer of young people - male and female - under 35 in the UK. Many thousands more attempt or contemplate suicide, harm themselves or suffer alone, afraid to speak openly about how they are feeling.

We are the national charity for the prevention of young suicide. We draw from the experience of many who have been touched personally by young suicide across the UK and speak on their behalf in our campaigns and in our work. We need more people who share our aims to join us to strengthen our voice - together we can save young lives.

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