Received the following Press Release from Fine Gael National Headquarters about the Governments Suicide Prevention Strategy
Following the launch of the National Strategy for Suicide Prevention, Fine Gael’s Deputy Spokesperson on Health and Children, Dan Neville TD, today (Thursday) welcomed the new proposals as a step towards highlighting and dealing with this very serious public health issue and urged the Government to ensure that the necessary funding would be made available.
“It would be unrealistic to expect a magic formula to reduce suicide levels but the proposals outlined today are welcome. In particular, I am delighted that there is a proposal to promote positive mental health and to implement a national intervention skills training programme.
“The recommendations within the National Strategy published today are similar to the 1998 recommendations of the National Taskforce on Suicide.
“The National Suicide Prevention Office that is to be set up to implement strategy, for example, is similar to the 1998 recommendation of the establishment of a National Suicide Review group. That group was given a similar task but it was not suitably resourced by the Government.
“Fine Gael urges the Government on this occasion to provide the necessary resources to implement today’s recommendations. Otherwise, the Strategy will gather dust and the Prevention Office will be ineffectual.
“It is somewhat disappointing that the recommendations are not costed as this would allow for an evaluation of resource allocation. Suicide reduction targets are a feature of most suicide prevention policies in other countries and it is also a pity that these are not included. I urge the Tánaiste to honour her commitment that she gave at the Strategy’s launch, to bring such targets to Government as soon as possible.”