Suicide Key Issues

Looking for Help?

The high profile NZ suicide prevention organisations are described and contact details are given here. They offer helpful information relating to suicide, for people in crisis or those who want to know how to help others.

Things Out of Control

If your life feels out of control, your head is exploding and you've got to get away. If you're stressed to the max, sad, tired, lonely, down or washed out, here's some hope...

How to Help a Friend

If you have a friend facing a crisis , let them know you care, be prepared to listen without judging as they talk things through. Put them in touch with helpful resources and keep involved until they are out of danger. Become informed yourself and act calmly and with confidence when outlining the options.

Recognising Warning Signs

When a friend is suicidal they are often in intense emotional turmoil and simply want the pain to stop . They may seem depressed or confused and act in a way that suggests they'd rather not go on living. Some signs to look for are... There are also Danger Signs that may indicate an immediate suicide crisis.

Awareness of Suicide

People keep asking - why so much suicide in NZ?
A common response is to point to the breakdown of the family and its supportive relationships or the alarming rate of child abuse. Trauma arising from a series of unhappy events occurring in a young person's life can lead to depression, which sometimes doesn't reveal itself until later in life.
Factors causing suicide
Suicide across the population

Suicide Prevention Organisations

The two highest profile organisations working in the area of NZ suicide prevention (since Yellow Ribbon closed down in March 2005) are, Project Hope and SPINZ.
For suicide prevention strategies

After a Suicide

It's a devastating time when someone close takes their life. You are not alone in dealing with this. Others who have walked this path can help you.
Practical help if you have to organise a funeral, or need other assistance:
Those left behind to deal with the aftermath can become victims if not supported.
Advice on forming a self-help Survivors Group.

The Good News

Inspiring stories, brilliant quotes and encouragement can help you or others through a tough time. Read a few.

From a Parent's Perspective

NZ Children commit suicide as young as 10 yrs old. Depression is well recognised in our children. Parents can help to safety proof their children by taking a purposeful and active role in coaching their children in key human skills like understanding and handling troubling feelings, controlling impulse and empathy.
Age differences for suicide
Depression and suicide in children
Unearthing your childrens issues and supporting children toward healing and balance

NZ Statistics

One New Zealander commits suicide every 16 hours on average - about 510 people a year.

Only 15 percent of these people are youth - suicide exists right across the community . . .
Key statistics

Conflict over statistics

Suicide Guidelines

Guidelines about preventing, recognising or managing suicide in New Zealand have been written for the professional sectors. Several programmes and services are also described here.

Suicide and the Media

The worst thing the media can do when reporting a suicide is to sensationalise, romanticise, glorify or use graphic detail. However, balanced articles can be helpful. Look for underlying mental health issues, stress the need for resources and treatment programmes and encourage community awareness and action. The government has published media guidelines here

Suicide and Schools

Suicide is a TABOO subject in most New Zealand classrooms. Curriculum components specifically exclude suicide and it is recommended that teaching and discussion of suicide to children of all ages is NOT undertaken...

Ethical Considerations

Suicide is not only a personal tragedy but one that impacts the wider family and community. Philosophers, libertarians, theologians and the medical profession continue to debate the moral and ethical issues. Explore some of the areas of debate here.