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Omagh Chairman in walk to support Suicide Awareness ‘into the light’ campaign

9 September, 2008


The Chairperson of Omagh District Council, Marty McColgan will join with Sinn Féin President Gerry Adams MP MLA and other party elected representatives on the 'Walking out of darkness and into the light' campaign on Wednesday September 10th.

The Event is organised by groups working to raise awareness and for more resources to tackle the issue of suicide.

The walk will leave the gates of Stormont at 6am on Wednesday September 10th. It marks World Suicide Prevention Day.

Speaking ahead of the event the Chairperson of Omagh District Council Cllr Marty McColgan said:

"Suicide claims the lives of many thousands of people across the world every year. In Ireland hundreds people die every year because of suicide and many thousands of people are admitted to hospital either having tried suicide or self-harm.

"This is a problem that touches every community here. Suicide is a huge issue that all of us have collectively responsibility to raise awareness about and to work to prevent.

"Mental ill-health is a major risk factor for suicide in Ireland and suicide itself is the biggest killer of our young people. Across Ireland Sinn Féin has been campaigning for an increase in funding for mental health and suicide prevention projects.

"The issue of long-term ring-fenced funding and the uncertainly facing the groups working on the ground proving support and training is a constant issue. Suicide prevention needs sustained resources.

"There are many people, including bereaved families, working in the community and voluntary sector who are worried that much of the funding allocated is not reaching those groups that are in the frontline of dealing with this issue and who provide a lifeline for those at risk.

"Sinn Féin has called for the funding issue to be properly addressed by the Health Minister and for an all-Ireland suicide prevention strategy that recognises that one size does not fit all and that takes account of the suicide risk among older people and those living in rural areas." ENDS

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