11 Sep 2012

SPEAKING after the ‘Youth Talks’ event at Stormont on World Suicide Prevention Day (Monday 10thSeptember 2012), Commissioner for Children and Young People, Patricia Lewsley - Mooney said:

“Suicide rates in Northern Ireland are worryingly high; over 600 people took their own lives in 2010 and 2011 and a recent UK inquiry identified that Northern Ireland has a higher suicide rate among young people than other UK jurisdictions.”

“Mental health problems and the issue of suicide can affect many children and young people which is why it was great to see over 80 young people at Stormont today asking questions and presenting their issues to MLAs and Ministers”

"NICCY has been greatly concerned about suicide among young people since the office was established. It is vital that all of us, including government, listen to the voices of children and young people themselves and make sure that their needs and interests are at the heart of services and strategies to reduce youth suicide.”

Mrs Lewsley-Mooney continued “Later in the Autumn I will be launching research which examines adolescent suicide. We must make sure that we are learning as much as we can from these tragedies to reduce other deaths among young people.”

“I call on the Ministerial Co-ordination Group on Suicide to ensure that there is greater commitment from all parts of government to address this most important of issues. I will also be asking government and statutory agencies to take forward recommendations from my forthcoming research as a matter of urgency.”

ENDS

Issued by Patrice Morris - Communication and Engagement Officer - 028 9031 1616 or patrice@niccy.org.