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NSW Labor pledges action on suicide

NSW Labor says it will step up action on suicide prevention with a holistic approach if it wins government at March 2023’s state election.

NEW YEARS DAY BONDI BEACH If elected, NSW Labor plans a
August 7, 2022
By Sam McKeith
7 August 2022

The NSW Labor opposition says it will take a whole of government approach to tackling the issue of suicide if it is successful at next year’s March election. 

NSW Labor on Sunday said if it won government it would pass laws to enshrine what it called a “holistic approach” to suicide prevention based on best practice overseas and interstate.

Jurisdictions the state may take lessons from include Japan, Argentina and Canada, as well as South Australia, the party said.

“NSW Labor is committed to tackling the complexities of mental health in New South Wales and addressing the need for urgent action in suicide prevention,” Labor said in a statement.

New legislation could include the formation of a suicide-prevention council comprised of senior public officials, MPs and community leaders.

Labor’s mental health spokesman Ryan Park said he hoped the new approach could find bipartisan support.

“That is what has recently occurred in South Australia and it would be great to see that happen here in NSW,” Mr Park said.

NSW Labor’s pledge comes after South Australia’s Labor government this year flagged establishing a suicide-prevention council, a statutory body with the aim of reducing the number of South Australians who take their own lives.

There were 431 suspected or confirmed suicides reported in NSW between January and May, up from 399 in the corresponding period last year.

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