Tameside has the highest suicide rate in Greater Manchester, with 70 deaths in 2015-17 alone. But a major new campaign to be launched this spring will aim to bring this down. And members of the public are being asked to help – initially by simply taking part in an online survey
which will give suicide prevention campaigners the vital information they need.
The campaign will be the biggest of its kind so far, with a coalition involving health services, local councils and the voluntary sector across Greater Manchester – and with public participation seen as the key to its success.
Tameside Council’s Executive Leader, Cllr Brenda Warrington, explained: “Suicide is a preventable tragedy, and everyone can play a part in improving how we tackle it – starting with this survey
“The survey aims to find out how we as communities deal with depression, and how as individuals we respond to other people who appear depressed – and also whether we know what to do if we feel we need help, or if we think someone else might be feeling suicidal. Campaigners need to understand all this so they can work out how to get the best information to everyone, and how to involve as many people as possible in preventing suicide.
“Every suicide has a massive effect, so we can’t underestimate the importance of preventing even one suicide. So giving a few minutes to take this online survey will literally help save lives.”
The survey can be found at www.smartsurvey.co.uk/s/85S1Q/
and is completely anonymous and confidential. The survey closes on 11 March and the campaign will be rolled out across Greater Manchester before summer – which is when the suicide rate usually increases.
Brenda Warrington concluded: “We’ll be looking to reduce the rate of suicide in Tameside and Glossop by 10% this year, and build on that in future.
“We need to start a social movement for change in the way we think and act regarding suicide and suicide prevention. Our vision is that no-one will see suicide as a solution. So our ultimate ambition is that there’ll be no more suicides in Tameside and Glossop.”
If you feel you would like to speak with someone at any time, you can contact Samaritans 24 hours a day on 116 123, http://www.samaritans.org
Suicide facts and figures
Rates of Suicide in Greater Manchester (2015-17)
- In England, one person dies every two hours as a result of suicide. In Tameside and Glossop there were 75 suicides in 2015-17.
- The majority of suicides occur in men. The highest numbers of suicides are found in men aged 45–54 years. But suicide is also the biggest killer of men under 49 years, and it remains the leading cause of death in people aged 15-29.
- There’s increased risk of suicide amongst the following:
- People in the lowest socioeconomic groups, and those living in the most deprived geographical areas – which includes parts of Tameside.
- Those who have previously self-harmed.
- Children and young people.
- People with untreated depression.
- Individuals who have been bereaved by suicide.
- People who are isolated.
- People who misuse drugs and alcohol.
- People in contact with the criminal justice system
- Specific occupational groups, such as doctors, nurses, veterinary workers, farmers and agricultural workers and veterans.
- Suicide takes a significant toll on others. It’s estimated that for every person who dies from suicide at least 10 people are directly affected. Also for each case of suicide, we know that there are around nine others who will have attempted suicide.