Why is this important?
Every suicide is a tragedy and touches so many. Families, friends and communities across NSW are devastated by the impact of suicide, with an estimated 17 lives lost each week. No one should have to go through the grief of losing a loved one to suicide.
Suicide prevention is everybody’s business and there is still much to do. Suicide is a complex problem and we all, as individuals, communities, the private sector and government need to take focussed and coordinated steps to prevent it and provide greater support across the community.
How are we tracking?
The rate of suicide in NSW has been increasing over the last decade. The reasons for this increase are many and complex. In 2020, a total of 876 people died by suicide in NSW, with the rate of suicide per 100,000 persons decreasing to 10.5. Reducing the rate of suicide requires continuous collaborative and compassionate action across the community.
Despite the impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic, data indicates the suicide rate has remained relatively stable overall. Due to concerns that the pandemic and related economic challenges could heighten risk factors for suicide, we continue to closely monitor the situation and available data for this priority.
What are we doing?
Towards Zero Suicides is an $87 million investment over 3 years from 2019-20 in new suicide prevention initiatives that address priorities in the Strategic Framework for Suicide Prevention in NSW 2018-23 and contributes to the Premier’s Priority to reduce the suicide rate by 20% by 2023.
The initiatives being rolled out across the state under the Towards Zero Suicides Priority are responsive to the needs of the community. Together they provide a holistic approach to suicide prevention and mental health and wellbeing, ranging from system changes and training for mental health practitioners and community leaders, to strengthening community care and expanding aftercare services.
The NSW Suicide Monitoring System is now operational and provides data and insights that support communities, local organisations, and government agencies to more effectively respond to suicide.
More information can be accessed on the following websites:
Do you need help?
If you, or someone you know, is thinking about suicide or experiencing a personal crisis or distress, help is available.