Suicides prompt awareness push

A MULLUMBIMBY woman says an alarming rise in suicides on the Northern Rivers, particularly in Mullumbimby, prompted her to start a campaign to raise more awareness of suicide prevention strategies.

Kerry Gray said while it was hard to get statistics on suicide, anecdotal evidence suggested there had been at least seven cases in Mullumbimby this year, a disturbing increase on previous years. She said most of them were young people and the issue needed to be brought out into the open.

“When you talk to people in the community there is a lack of awareness and understanding about suicide,” she said.

“People want to offer support but they are unsure how to do that. It's still such a taboo subject.”

To help get the wheels in motion Ms Gray recently organised a meeting of people involved in suicide prevention. They included mental health workers, social workers, drug and alcohol counsellors, youth and family workers and paramedics to discuss the current situation and how the local area was coping.

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