KRISTINA BÅTNES HESTDAHL
Queensland Mental Health Commission and Health and Ambulance Services Minister Cameron Dick has said the government is committed to ensuring suicide is not a topic that lies in the shadows of conversation.
“Mental health is not something to be ashamed of and I encourage all Queenslanders to use the World Suicide Prevention Day to speak up – whether they need help, or they believe someone they know does,” Mr Dick said.
Last Sunday marked World Suicide Prevention Day and this year’s theme was Take a minute, change a life.
The campaign was aimed at helping people realise how important it is to be able to have a supportive conversation about suicide.
Queensland Mental Health Commissioner, Ivan Frkovic said the primary message is that we all need to be able to talk to someone that might be struggling.
“We need to help them access the services they need, and be able to have those conversations when we are concerned about their mental health and wellbeing, before they reach a crisis,” Mr Frkovic said.
A survey released by Suicide Prevention Australia has revealed many Australians have an inaccurate understanding of suicide and how to prevent it.
According to the report, talking about suicide is a warning sign and should be taken seriously.
The report said ‘very few people who attempt to take their own life have not communicated in some way with those around them or exhibited warning signs’.
The report also stated that talking about suicide does not increase the risk, which seems to be the belief of almost 20 per cent of Australians.
Asking someone about will instead open the channels to talk honestly and openly about the problem, the report said.