Campaign aims to reduce local suicide rate

The launch of Suicide Prevention Week took place at the Stagecoach Depot in Arbroath on Thursday afternoon. Their buses will have the signs attached to them as in the picture. Pictured are, Adrian McLaughlin chairman of Choose Life Steering Group and Gail Forrest Choose Life Co-ordinator Angus and Dundee.

The launch of Suicide Prevention Week took place at the Stagecoach Depot in Arbroath on Thursday afternoon. Their buses will have the signs attached to them as in the picture. Pictured are, Adrian McLaughlin chairman of Choose Life Steering Group and Gail Forrest Choose Life Co-ordinator Angus and Dundee.

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CHOOSE life is appealing for local people to ‘read between the lines’ to help reduce suicide rates in the area.

Last year 14 people in Angus took their own lives, leaving a lasting impact on families, friends and communities.

Suicide Prevention Week, which runs until Sunday aims to raise awareness and ensure help is widely available.

The new campaign, ‘Read between the lines’, calls on everyone to be alert to the warning signs of suicide in the people close to them.

The message is that if you are worried about someone, asking them directly about their feelings can help to save a life.

Gail Forrest, Choose Life co-ordinator for Angus and Dundee, said: “You tend to know when someone close to you isn’t quite themselves. So if you notice any changes in their behaviour that worry you – even if the signs come and go – ask them about it.

“You’ll find that talking can help a person get clarity about what it is that’s troubling them, and often gives a sense of perspective. Starting a conversation is half the battle.

“You don’t need to have an answer to their problems – just be there for them, try to listen carefully without judging, and show that you care.”

During Suicide Prevention Week a host of activities, supported by Angus Council, NHS Tayside and Tayside Police are took place.

Choose Life will also be working with Arbroath Football Clubs and nformation will be available in the match day programmes and announcements will be made before the game and at half time. 

Information will go on display at bus stances, certain leisure centres and health information points across the area.