Laura Sharman 10 September 2015

Councils given advice to prepare and prevent 'suicide clusters'

New guidance to help councils prevent and react to ‘suicide clusters’ has been published by Public Health England (PHE).

The resource aims to help local authorities provide an appropriate response to an unexpectedly high number of suicides in their local areas. It will also help councils to identify the risk of suicide clusters occurring in the first place.

Professor Louis Appleby, chair of the National Suicide Prevention Advisory Group, said: ‘Clusters of suicides may occur in communities, groups of friends or institutions. The people affected may live near each other, attend the same college or be connected through social media. Young people are particularly susceptible.

‘This resource aims to help local agencies to prepare, to prevent one tragic death leading to another.’

Suicide prevention was one of the public health responsibilities transferred to local authorities in April 2013.

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