Debate on male suicide, House of Commons, Wednesday 13 December 2017

Suicide prevention is a priority for local government. On average 13 people in England take their lives every day, with three quarters of these suicide victims being male. Suicide is the biggest killer of men under 50 as well as the leading cause of death in young people.


Key messages

  • Suicide prevention is a priority for local government. On average 13 people in England take their lives every day, with three quarters of these suicide victims being male. Suicide is the biggest killer of men under 50 as well as the leading cause of death in young people
  • The impact of suicide on local communities is significant. We estimate that for every person who dies, between six and 60 people are directly affected. For every suicide nearly £1.7 million is lost in things like productivity and caring for those left behind.
  • Councils are actively improving suicide prevention services. In 2012 councils were given responsibility for developing local suicide action plans through their work with Health and Wellbeing Boards by the end of this year. As at the end of 2016 95 per cent of local authorities had these plans in place. Public Health England is in the process of conducting a survey of local authorities regarding their plans.
  • Many councils have formed multi-agency suicide prevention partnerships, incorporating public health, Clinical Commissioning Groups (CCGs), primary and secondary care, the voluntary sector, criminal justice system and those affected by suicide.
  • Suicide prevention should be viewed in the broader context of mental health and mental wellbeing. The LGA supports the investment of £1 billion by 2020 in the NHS to address mental health announced in the Spring Budget 2017. There also needs to be a similar investment in local government to help address mental health and suicide.
  • Good mental health is essential for a healthy and prosperous society. Councils have a range of statutory duties and non-statutory functions related to mental health and supporting mental wellness. From housing to public health, social care, culture and leisure services, councils lead local services that help prevent mental ill health, support early intervention and provide ongoing support.

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Debate on male suicide, House of Commons, Wednesday 13 December 2017