Why aren't we doing more in Australia to prevent suicide When more people die each year by suicide than the national road toll? Let's Stand Together and Stop SuicideRead Now
Suicide is the leading cause of death for those aged 15 to 44 in Australia. More people die by suicide annually than the national road toll.
If this is the case, why isn't more being done to lower this statistic?
With road accidents, they build things to lower the death toll. They have more speed cameras, billboards about the dangers of driving tired, more police doing drink driving testing. The list goes on.
So, why then is the government not stepping up to lower the suicide rate?
The Australian Bureau of Statistics states that approximately 40% of people who take their own life have a diagnosis of depression. We lose over 3,000 people per year to suicide. It is very clear something isn't working.
Stigma, shame and barriers to access mental health support are part of the reason the death toll is so high.
suicide is preventable. Let's Stand together and Stop it.
As an advocate for mental health, I am trying my hardest to get word out for suicide prevention awareness. As Chief Hope Officer at Accelerating Social Good, a social good consultancy focused exclusively on the mental health space, we have adopted suicide prevention as our cause.
But what really needs to happen here in Australia is an open round table discussion with government officials to come up with a better suicide plan to lower the number of deaths. And those with lived experience needed to be invited to take a seat at the table.
To make suicide less of a taboo subject, we also need more awareness, equitable access to mental health support and more lived experience voices courageously speaking up in general. Hopelessness is the leading predictor of suicide. By sharing our stories, we can give those struggling a reason to hope.
Let's change take bold and decisive action. Let's change the narrative. In this way, we can hopefully lower the statistics and stop preventable suicides.
We have the power to elicit great change if we all come together and collaborate on mental health and suicide prevention.
With gratitude and with hope.
Erin Macauley, Chief Hope Officer & Mental Health Activist, Accelerating Social Good.