Reducing stigma and discrimination around suicide is the next step in the Victorian government’s plan to halve the number of people who self harm in the state.
Mental Health minister Martin Foley announced the second phase of the Labor government’s plan to combating suicide by increasing local support services.
“It’s our goal to halve the rates of suicide over the next ten years,” Mr Foley said on Sunday.
“We will do that by having community conversations about seeking to remove stigma, discrimination and bringing the discussions out about what we can do to provide hope,” he said.
He said using case studies would help develop the best strategies to tackle suicide with two organisations chosen to help reduce stigma and seek help.
Advocate Georgia Hocking lost her 22-year-old brother, Benjamin to suicide in 2016 and backed the plans to support people at-risk of suicide and their families.
“If I take anything from what happened with Ben it’s that suicide is 100 per cent preventable and I feel that my brother’s death was preventable,” Ms Hocking said.
She said the “ripple effect” from a suicide for those left behind was “catastrophic” and urged people to speak to their loved ones about the issue.
The organisations to help tackle suicide are the Lived Experience Project which will aim to reduce stigma and promote help-seeking behaviour in the Frankston Mornington Peninsula and Dandenong regions.
Roses in the Ocean directly supports those who have survived suicide or lost a loved one to suicide to help train and mentor people to talk about the issue in their community.
This is the second phase of a government rollout of the Suicide Prevention Framework, which has been provided with $27 million over four years.
The first stage saw hospitals receive funding to help those who attempted suicide in their community after being in the Emergency Department.
Readers seeking support and information about suicide prevention can contact Lifeline on 13 11 14.
Suicide Call Back Service 1300 659 467.
MensLine Australia 1300 78 99 78.
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