Briefing update on proposed NI Suicide Prevention Bill

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By VIEW editor Brian Pelan

Organisations, campaigners, MLAs and individuals affected by the loss of someone through suicide attended a briefing today, organised by Contact, at the Crowne Plaza Hotel, Shaws Bridge, Belfast.

Fergus Cumiskey

Fergus Cumiskey

Contact’s chief executive Fergus Cumiskey told the audience that there was an urgent need to implement legislation on suicide prevention.

“Many of us in this room have had the ‘knock on the door’ to inform us of a death through suicide. The need to continue this conversation is vital.”

Among those who spoke at the event was Maurice Campbell whose son Patrick (26) died by suicide in the grounds of the Ulster Hospital at Dundonald in 2013, while in the care of the South Eastern Health Trust.

He said: “Legislation is needed to give impetus to suicide prevention and encourage people to be more open about what has happened in certain circumstances.”

Among those present at the meeting were Women’s Aid NI; Dr Margaret du Feu, chair of the Royal College of Psychiatrists in Northern Ireland; Sinn Fein MLAs Fra McCann and Pat Sheehan; Alliance MLA David Ford and Progressive Unionist Party councillor Dr John Kyle.

 

 

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