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Buddy Up QR Calgary (interview starts at 15:35)
June 19, 2023
Akash Asif, Centre for Suicide Prevention’s Strategy and Operations Director, spoke with QR Calgary about the Buddy Up men’s suicide prevention campaign and Buddy Up Month, which runs throughout June, Men’s Health Month. “There are some factors for why men as a group are at higher risk for suicide… there are societal pressure for men to be stoic… there’s this expectation that… no matter how difficult times get, just keep chugging along because you’re not allowed to show emotion… or how difficult things are for you. Due to these expectations, oftentimes men are reluctant and less likely to seek help when they are struggling… we’re focusing on offering help instead and noticing changes in behaviour and asking them ‘what’s going on?’ That’s the premise of our Buddy Up communications campaign,” says Asif.
Related: June is Men’s Mental Health monthDurham Radio News

Here’s Why Malaysia and Other Countries Are Decriminalizing SuicideTIME
June 28, 2023
Malaysia and Ghana have recently passed bills to decriminalize suicide. Guyana, Pakistan, India, and Singapore have all, within the past few years, decriminalized suicide as well. As recently as 2020, one person in Malaysia was sentenced to six months in jail following a suicide attempt, which highlighted the issue and incited calls for change. “The existence of Section 309 was a provision from the 19th century because it was seen at the time that criminalizing suicide would be an act of prevention,” Deputy Law Minister Ramkarpal Singh said in May. “But nowadays, medical treatment, and not prosecution, is the best way to address the matter, based on approaches by other countries.” This article goes on to explain why suicide should not be a crime, including that the illegality of suicide adds layers of complexity to emotional distress for those considering suicide. Kenny Lim, executive director of Befrienders Kuala Lumpur says, “We have heard from people who say things like, ‘With this law that criminalizes a person who attempts suicide, if I were to do it, I would make sure, I will die. It actually instills fear into people who are struggling, and it sort of prevents people from reaching out for help.”

Inuk teen displaced from foster homes 78 times before her suicide: Quebec coronerCTV News
June 27, 2023
Maggie Kimattuuti Padlayat, 18, died by suicide in August 2019. A coroner’s inquest into her death found that, since she was a child, Padlayat was displaced from foster homes 78 times before her death. Coroner Pascale Boulay says in her report, “Can we really be surprised that she developed behavioural problems with difficulties integrating and respecting the rules associated with a severe attachment disorder with deep feelings of rejection? The breakup probably became the straw that broke the camel’s back and that was the trigger leading to (her taking her own life).”  Boulay outlines two key recommendations in her report: Quebec’s Ministry of Health and Social Services should relax the employment standards for the province’s youth protection system to allow more Inuit youth protection workers to be hired, possible solutions should be identified to avoid multiple displacements, and that sense of belonging and cultural issues “are taken more seriously into consideration for Inuit children when they are confronted with situations giving rise to repetitive movements.”

Landmark Study Shows Higher Suicide Risk for Transgender PeopleNew York Times
June 27, 2023
A new study from Denmark analyzed 40 years of health and legal records from nearly 7 million Danish people and found that transgender people in Denmark are more than 7 times more likely to attempt suicide and 3.5 times more likely to die by suicide than the rest of the population. “This is beyond doubt a huge problem that needs to be looked at,” said Dr. Morten Frisch, study co-author. Ann Haas, professor at the City University of New York, says, “This offers a stark rebuttal to some of those political arguments suggesting suicide risk in these groups are exaggerated.”

Suicides rose in Japan among young women and girls during pandemic – Japan Times
June 26, 2023
**Language warning: Use of the word ‘commit’** According to Japan’s health ministry, there was a significant increase in suicide deaths among women and girls aged 10-24 during the pandemic. Research found a strong relationship between the pandemic and the rise of suicides among women, and researchers note that perhaps women were more affected by the social isolation caused by health measures due to the pandemic, as well, incidents of abuse and domestic violence increased during that time, which may have contributed. Researchers recommend a targeted mental health support system for women and girls and increased mental health care for everyone.