Many of us have been affected by the death of a family member, partner, friend or co-worker due to suicide. In fact, more than 3,500 Canadians die by suicide every year, making it a major national public health issue. And yet Canada remains one of the few industrialized countries without a national suicide prevention strategy.
Sept. 10 marks World Suicide Prevention Day. It is a time when people across the globe come together to support those bereaved by suicide, support those who are struggling, and renew our commitment to helping all Canadians live with dignity, hope and meaning in their lives.
This year, the Canadian Association for Suicide Prevention has chosen the theme “All Together” to mark World Suicide Prevention Day. Suicide prevention is a responsibility we all share and saving lives requires that we work together and support one another.
The Brandon Suicide Prevention Implementation Network (SPIN) invites you to consider becoming involved in your own ways to mark this day and others throughout the year.
Here are some things you can do:
• If you or someone you know is experiencing thoughts of suicide or has lost someone to suicide, call Westman Crisis Services (204-725-4411), the Manitoba Suicide Line (1-877-435-7170) or the Suicide Bereavement Support Group (204-571-4183);
• Attend the World Suicide Prevention Day event on Sept. 10 at Brandon City Hall (12:15 p.m. to 12:45 p.m.); and/or the free SafeTALK workshop from 2 p.m. to 4:30 p.m. at the Provincial Building. Call 204-578-2529 for information;
• Light a candle in your window at 8 p.m. on Sept. 10 to remember those who have died by suicide and support those who have lost someone to suicide;
• Learn more about suicide and what you can do to help yourself or others. Visit reasontolive.ca;
• Get involved in local suicide prevention work. Join the local Suicide Prevention Implementation Network (SPIN): 204-578-2529 or visit spinbrandon.ca;
• Lobby the federal government to adopt a national suicide prevention strategy. Visit suicideprevention.ca.
Janet Smith, program manager
Manitoba Farm & Rural Support Services/Manitoba Suicide Line
Republished from the Brandon Sun print edition September 5, 2012