North Somerset Council has joined the Zero Suicide Alliance, a collaboration of National Health Service trusts, charities, businesses and individuals who are all committed to suicide prevention.
The Zero Suicide Alliance offers free online training, which only takes around 20 minutes to complete and can be done at any time on a phone, tablet or computer. The training aims to help people have conversations with friends and family about suicide and supports them to help others who may be having suicidal thoughts, directing them to sources of support.
North Somerset Council along with partners across the Bristol, North Somerset and South Gloucestershire region are calling for 10,000 people to complete this free suicide prevention training.
Cllr Mike Bell, Deputy Leader of North Somerset Council and Executive Member with responsibility for health, said: “Here in North Somerset our suicide rates are similar to the rate in England, at 10 per 100,000 people. But clearly just one is one too many.
“Suicide is preventable. We need to break the stigma attached to talking about suicide so we can have open and honest conversation with our loved ones. This free training from the Zero Suicide Alliance is a really helpful and useful way to do that. I’d urge everyone in North Somerset to complete the training. It only takes twenty minutes of your time and you never know when you might use the skills you’ve learnt to save someone’s life.”
Jo Walker, North Somerset Council Chief Executive who spoke at a recent regional suicide prevention summit, added: “I’m pleased that as a council we’ve joined the Zero Suicide Alliance and I’d really encourage everyone to sign up to the free training.
“It only takes 20 minutes to do and, having done the training, I definitely feel better placed to identify when someone is presenting with suicidal thoughts or behaviour, be able to speak to them in a supportive way and signpost to the correct services or support.”