News and Press

Here we have put together a library of resources and social and policy publications. Each publication can be read as an e-magazine, and are free to download. We will highlight new publications as they are published.


Madeleine Moon calls for a debate on services for people bereaved by suicide


House of Commons Health Select Committee Report: Suicide Prevention (Sixth Report of Session 2016 – 2017)

We welcome the Health Select Committee’s encouraging report into suicide prevention, published today. We especially welcome the emphasis on the importance of high quality suicide bereavement support, and the recommendation that suicide bereavement support must be included in local suicide prevention planning.

There is still an unacceptable gap between Government policy and the implementation of provisions for people at high risk of suicide. Those at the very highest risk remain without adequate statutory support and we urge the Prime Minister, Government, and Local Authorities to act on the clear recommendations contained in this report to implement timely, appropriate and sustainable support.

The strong written and oral evidence provided by many members of the SASP are a clear voice in the Committee’s recommendations and we are pleased that the report reflects the changes we are collectively working to create. Members of the SASP continue to work tirelessly to provide support and initiate change. The recommendations in this report reflect the increasing awareness for the importance of suicide bereavement support in social and political agendas. These encouraging recommendations give us a foundation with which we can drive forward our Vision that, “Everyone bereaved or affected by suicide is offered timely and appropriate support.”

Guidelines for reporting on suicide

Everyone has a part to play in suicide prevention. Your responsible reporting of a suicide is where you can directly help in reducing the incidence of further copycat suicides.If you take one thing from your visit today, please keep in mind that if you report on a suicide, it would be very helpful to avoid going into detail about the method. This is in line with the Editor’s Code Clause 5:

“When reporting suicide, to prevent simulative acts care should be taken to avoid excessive detail of the method used, while taking into account the media’s right to report legal proceedings”

There is strong evidence to demonstrate that certain kinds of publicity surrounding suicide, whether news reports or a suicide in a TV drama, are capable of prompting a net increase in the number of people taking their own lives.Those “simulative acts” may indeed use the methods portrayed in a drama or a news report. But the sad and surprising truth is that giving those details does not simply give another option to somebody who is going to choose to end their life anyway. Thank you very much for your support in helping to reduce suicide.

The Samaritans produce helpful guidance for media coverage which you can view below, or choose to download in our other resources section below

Other resources

Support after a suicide: Developing and delivering local bereavement support services

Support after a suicide: Evaluating local bereavement support services

Support after a suicide: a guide for providing local services

The Samaritan’s Media Guidelines

SASP is a programme hosted by Samaritans, registered charity number 219432 and SC040604. Copyright Samaritans © 2020