Newspapers Join Forces Over Suicide

Four daily newspapers are joining forces in a bid to tackle the problem of suicide in Northern Ireland.

The Irish News, News Letter, Belfast Telegraph and Daily Mirror have chosen 10 September to publish a joint statement. The date marks World Suicide Prevention Day.

All four will run the statement on their front page and use inside pages to highlight personal stories of families affected by suicide.

In their statement, the newspapers said the tragedy of suicide was “claiming victims across every age group, class, creed, county and community in increasing numbers”.

“And while the suicide rate among our pensioners is the highest in the world, it is among our young that the greatest devastation is felt.

“More young men and women die from suicide each year than in road accidents.”

The papers said every day in Northern Ireland at least one person took their own life, while another four people would attempt to kill themselves.

They said there needed to be action to “bring an end to silent hopelessness that haunts thousands of people in our cities, towns, villages and remote rural homes”.

They added: “Our political leaders must recognise that every person in Northern Ireland could be at risk of suicide at some time in their life.

“With more than 80,000 people here living with some degree of mental health problem, the issue cannot be underestimated.”