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Community Based Suicide Strategies Need Support

31 May, 2007

Sinn Féin Newry Armagh MP Conor Murphy, speaking after a meeting with the Newry and Mourne PIPS Group, has said that it was essential that a commitment to supporting community based initiatives which are making a real impact and to further investment in clinical and community-based research on suicide prevention was forthcoming.

The MP welcomed the launch of the recent launch of the PIPS. Newry and Mourne Information card in the South Down area and said that he hoped that such an initiative could if possible become available throughout the Newry City and South Armagh area.

Mr Murphy said:

"Ireland has the second highest incidence of suicide in Europe. More than 500 people die each year and more than 10,000 people present at A&E due to self harm. It is one of the biggest causes of death of young people on this Island.

"Many people believe that the respective governments and agencies have completely failed to deal with this crisis and the result is that for many people who are at risk and their families, there is not appropriate help available.

"It is essential that groups like PIPS Newry and Mourne, whose aims were to save lives and support those affected by suicide and self harm, should receive whatever practical financial and other support resources possible. PIPS Newry and Mourne has certainly increased our communities' awareness around the issues of suicide and self harm, as well as reducing the stigma of suicide. They are working at grass root community level, using a bottom up approach to the issue of suicide and self harm. Myself and many others are convinced that such self help groups have a key role to play in the area of suicide prevention." ENDS

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