Calls for more support on suicide prevention

By Dean Nathan

A record 564 people have committed suicide over the last year. That's according to new statistics released today by Chief Coroner, Judge Deborah Marshal.

Youth suicide prevention advocate, Mariameno Kapa-Kingi of youth group, The Raid Movement says these new statistics don't make for good reading.

She says, “It is disappointing. The coroner says it hasn’t maintained the reduction.  So if there is anything that I want to say in response to the report is that more effort and more attention needs to go into what we continue to do.”

The Chief Coroner Suicide statistics released today show from July 2014 to June 2015, the number of suicides in Auckland were high with 48. But the Waitematā region had the highest in the country with 63. There were 61 in Canterbury, 49 in Waikato, 42 in the Southern region, 32 in Bay of Plenty and 28 in the Northern region.

The Whangarei based youth group, The Raid Movement was formed over three-years-ago with the primary goal of combating suicide. Last month the group offered assistance to five families in the Northland region.

“The impact is still the same because we're receiving our people back and burying our people, ah we want to do more here and we are obviously saying more might need to be done anywhere and everywhere else,” said Kapa-Kingi.

Statistics also show 428 males and 136 females died by suicide. 75% of suicide deaths are male.

“The number of males the number of Maori 20-24 year olds thats a great concern still and overall the numbers are a concern,” added Kapa-Kingi.

Meanwhile, work is continuing among families and communities to seek preventative solutions to suicide.

If you or anyone you know is in need of assistance there are a range of services available, there is a free resource and information service under the Mental Health Foundation on 09 623 4812.

• Lifeline - 0800 543 354 

• Depression Helpline (8 am to 12 midnight) - 0800 111 757 

• Healthline - 0800 611 116 

• Suicide Crisis Helpline  0508 828 865 (0508 TAUTOKO) 

• Youthline - 0800 376 633, free text 234 or email

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