Suicide Prevention in Australia. Why We Need To Be Doing More.
Suicide is the leading cause of death for those aged between 15-44 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?
As an advocate for mental health, I am trying my hardest to get word out for mental health awareness. But what needs to happen is an open round table discussion with government officials to come up with a better suicide plan to lower the number of deaths.
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, so it is clear something isn't working. Stigma, shame and barriers to access mental health support are also part of the reason the death toll is so high.
We need more awareness, equitable access to mental health support and more lived experience voices speaking up, so as to make suicide less of a taboo topic. Lets change the narrative and hopefully lower the statistics. Suicide is preventable and we have the power to elicit great change if we all come together and collaborate when it comes to mental health and suicide prevention.