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Proposals on Suicide Prevention must be effective - Adams

27 February, 2006

Sinn Féin West Belfast MP Gerry Adams has warned that "any proposals from the British government around suicide prevention need to meet the needs of those at risk and their families, while ensuring that sufficient funds are available to effectively resource any plan of action."

Mr. Adams was speaking today after a meeting with relatives bereaved through suicide and a number of support groups from west and north Belfast and County Down.

The meeting was held in advance of a planned announcement in March from the Health Minister Shaun Woodward who is expected to publish for consultation a draft strategy on suicide prevention and announce an allocation of funds to implement it. The announcement will be based on a report by the Suicide Prevention Taskforce which was established last year.

Speaking after the meeting Mr. Adams said:

"'The families bereaved through suicide, community support groups and Sinn Féin will scrutinise very carefully any proposals brought forward by the Minister. The key to a successful strategy, and to tackling this increasingly serious problem, will be the proposals contained in the Minister's announcement, the government's preparedness to implement and resource them, and a commitment to an all-Ireland approach to this issue.

Today's meeting agreed that the families and support groups, as well as Sinn Féin, will judge any recommendations against the campaign demands of those working on this issue.

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