Coalition on male suicide

BTP joins Duke of Cambridge in coalition on male suicide

Today (Thursday 12 May), we join the Duke of Cambridge to launch a unique coalition of frontline services to help tackle the issue of male suicide – the single biggest killer of men under the age of 45 in the UK

With an estimated cost of £20million, male suicide accounts for 76% of all suicides in the UK. It has a huge impact not only on individuals and families, but also on frontline services.

Male suicideThis is why we’ve joined with other frontline services from land, sea and air, including Network Rail, the National Police Chiefs’ Council, the Chief Fire Officers’ Association, the Association of Ambulance Chief Executives, Highways England and the Royal National Lifeboat Institution (RNLI). The coalition, convened by the Campaign Against Living Miserably (CALM), is also joined by Samaritans and Unliever’s male grooming brand Lynx, one of CALM’s key partners.

Round table discussion

The Duke of Cambridge chairs a discussion in London today, hearing real-life stories from the frontline and discussing how to move forward. The coalition’s aim is to pool members’ expertise in dealing with suicide to develop a resource that helps men identify and support others, and themselves, when down, depressed or suicidal.

BTP’s head of suicide prevention and mental health (SPMH) Mark Smith said: “It is fantastic to be involved in such a high profile event, raising awareness around mental health and the issue of male suicide.

“This is sadly something our officers come across each day on our railways and so we are committed to working with our partners in this new coalition to address the issue.

“This is an opportunity to share our learning from this and work together to find new ways of moving forward.”

Round table suicide

How BTP tackles the issue

Since 2010, we have run a suicide prevention strategy, which includes training for frontline staff and sees divisional teams where our staff and NHS community nurses sit side by side to provide information for officers involved in incidents on the ground.

We also have a suicide prevention hotline for health services, rail staff and volunteers, and targeted patrols at vulnerable areas to help anyone in distress.

In 2015/16 we spent 12,646 deployment hours dealing with fatalities, which in the main involved suicide. In addition, we deal with some 9,000 mental health crisis and suicidal incidents each year and manage around 1,200 people on suicide prevention plans.


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