Suicide/Mental Illness is the cause of death of hundreds of thousands of lives
every year. Nothing alarms a family more than losing a loved one to suicide/
Globally approximately close to one million people die from suicide every year
– that’s twice the number from homicide. Suicide is one of the leading causes
of death in young people.
In Australia it is very difficult for us to estimate due to the process of collating
data determining a suicide. The coroner’s role is to determine the cause of
death, not the leading circumstances to the death but we estimate in excess of
8,000. This list goes on and this is shear devastation in anyone’s opinion.
Do their deaths touch the hearts of the world? Are these people remembered
with dignity and respect? Are any buried by state funerals? If mass suicides
occur what is the reaction? Are the surviving families helped in any way?
Are there telethons to raise the much needed funds? Are we caring,
compassionate and understanding to those suffering this dreaded illness and
We know of families that have lost all their children to suicide (4) in other
families parents have lost three and two children. Others have lost mothers,
fathers, brothers, sisters, cousins, uncles, aunties, grandparents etc. In many
cases family members are the first on the scene and have found their loved
ones, their own flesh and blood in horrific circumstances. All of these people
are traumatised, devastated but yet they must grieve in silence and cope
For those left behind by these tragedies the hurt is no less traumatic and yet
society’s response to these surviving families and friends is vastly different
from the help offered in other kinds of medical and social tragedies. It seems
that no one cares or understands that the families and friends of suicide
victims are in as much need of help and support as other members of our
Australian society and are just as deserving of our understanding and respect.
If a million people were killed by any other means there would be a huge
Why the difference?
How many more people must die before “Action Against Suicide” is taken
“ A single death is a tragedy; a million deaths is a statistic. ”
– Joseph Stalin
“ Learn from yesterday, live for today, hope for tomorrow. The
important thing is to not stop questioning. ”
– Albert Einstein