Experts and young people meet at summit on suicide prevention

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EXPERTS from across the country are meeting in Yorkshire for a conference to discuss suicide prevention and how best to support those at risk of harming themselves.

Organised by Rotherham Council and Rotherham Safeguarding Children Board, Thursday’s conference will involve professionals from schools, youth services, health services, social services, police and the voluntary sector.

Dr John Radford, Rotherham Council’s director of public health, said: “Suicide and self-harm are highly complex and sensitive issues which devastate families.

“They are difficult issues to talk about but we want to encourage people to address them head on, and to understand how we can all better work together as professionals – and as communities – to tackle these issues.”

The conference will also see the launch of a new resource for frontline workers, called CARE about suicide. This resource will help frontline workers spot the signs of someone who could be at risk of suicide, ask about suicide and guide that person towards professional help.

The day’s programme will also include members of Rotherham’s Youth Cabinet; tackling self-harm amongst young people is one of their manifesto aims this year. They are working with service providers to look at improving the help available.

Dr Radford added: “We are committed to helping people who are in need of support, and this requires a depth of understanding and co-ordinated response from a variety of agencies.

“The message from this event is clear: we all need to work together to prevent suicide and self-harm.”

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