‘The fact that 425 families lost someone to suicide in Lanarkshire in the last five years is truly a tragedy’
Samaritans react to latest figures
More than 400 people have taken their own lives in Lanarkshire in the last five years.
The shocking statistics show that there were 425 suicides throughout the county from 2012 to 2016.
And figures released by National Records of Scotland show that men are more than two times more likely to take their own lives than women.
Suicide remains the leading cause of death for men under the age of 50 in the UK although NHS Lanarkshire’s rate is below the national average.
The picture is bleak across Scotland – with suicide rates rising by eight per cent in 2016.
As the Scottish Government sets out its suicide prevention plan, the first national strategy since 2015, emotional support charity Samaritans insist more commitment is required to address the needs of high-risk individuals to ensure fewer deaths from suicide in the coming years.
The grim toll shows a total of 318 men (74.8 per cent and a rate of 20.2 per 100,000) and 107 women (25.2 per cent and a rate of 6.3 per 100,000) took their own lives in Lanarkshire between 2012 and 2016.
The data reveals that 68 men committed suicide in 2016 – a rise of 28.3 per cent on the previous year.
Eighteen women had taken their own lives in the same year – one less than in 2015 and dropping by one third over the four-year period.
The Lanarkshire figures account for 11.4 per cent of the total number of suicides in Scotland – 9.4 per cent less than Greater Glasgow and Clyde where there were 773 suicides.
A total of 782 people took their own lives in Scotland in 2016 and there were 3271 suicides from 2012 to 2016.
In 2016, 517 men in Scotland took their own lives – an increase of 8.6 per cent on the previous year.
The figure for women that year was 211 – a rise of 7.6 per c en t from 2015.
Suicide rates for 2017 have not yet been published by the National Records of Scotland.
MP Dr Lisa Cameron said: “I note that South Lanarkshire Council is below both the national and European figures in relation to number of suicides 2012
16. enable males more readily to seek help.
“I am aware that NHS Scotland have provided suicide awareness staff training which is likely to have improved prevention.
“I must also commend the work of the Samaritans, Breathing Space and other organisations locally in supporting individuals when at their most vulnerable and saving lives.” has a lower rate of suicides than the national average, we need to see real local leadership and national ownership of the issue of suicide prevention because addressing suicide rests across a multitude of local and national government functions, from education to justice, health and social services.
“Without such leadership, direction and focus we risk slipping further behind our UK neighbours, seeing more people losing loved ones and feeling we simply did not do enough to stop that happening.
“The Scottish Government are currently consulting the public on the next suicide prevention action plan and Samaritans believe there is much more that can be done to ensure there are fewer deaths from suicide in Lanarkshire in the future.”
The final plan is to be published this summer.
There is a range of suicide prevention training available in Lanarkshire, some of which is available to the public, such as Applied Suicide Intervention Skills Training (ASIST) and safeTALK (suicide alertness for everyone).
For help and support for your mental health, speak to your GP or, if out of hours, call NHS 24 on 111. There is also