Darwin Youth and Community Suicide Prevention Forums

Darwin youths, families and community members will be invited to share stories, discuss challenges and bring forward ideas at a series of forums aimed at preventing people taking their own lives.

Page last updated: 22 February 2018

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22 February 2018

Darwin youths, families and community members will be invited to share stories, discuss challenges and bring forward ideas at a series of forums aimed at preventing people taking their own lives.

The plan was outlined at the fourth meeting of the Darwin Suicide Prevention Steering Committee today, chaired by Indigenous Health Minister Ken Wyatt.

“Listening to and respecting individuals and families is essential,” Minister Wyatt said.

“These forums will expand on recent engagement with young people, schools and Indigenous organisations, extending a helping hand to locals working to build resilience and strengthen communities.”

The forums will start in March, aiming to develop more awareness of Darwin’s National Suicide Prevention Trial, highlight grassroots needs and empower local solutions.

Today’s steering committee meeting heard from Northern Territory PHN health stream coordinator Cleavon Davis that “healing starts with you”.

“Aboriginal suicides are our business and we need to be self-determinant,” he said.

“We need to be culturally appropriate, culturally sensitive and culturally safe and to listen to our people.”

The meeting resolved to work closely with Elders and also to ensure that people in town camps are included in the suicide prevention trial.

The impact of bullying, in particular cyber bullying, was highlighted as a priority, along with breaking down silos between community and health agencies, with the committee resolving to produce a directory to improve access to suicide prevention services.

“Suicide prevention among Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Australians is a top priority for the Turnbull Government,” said Minister Wyatt.

“We need to support families and communities to take hold of the challenges and establish what works for them.

“There are also strategies that are working in various places and we must look closely at the potential for these to be adapted to bring benefits to other communities, as well.”

Darwin is one of 12 locations in the National Suicide Prevention Trial, in recognition of the high local suicide rate, a large proportion of which are Indigenous people.

The youth and community forums will be widely publicised. For more information, visit the NT PHN website.

Media contact: Nick Way, Media Adviser 0419 835 449

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