Australia’s first culturally appropriate collection of suicide prevention resources is helping communities and professionals to reduce the unacceptable rate of suicide among First Nations peoples.
The suicide rate of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people is twice that of other Australians. Among children and youth, the suicide rate is four times as high.
The Manual of Resources in Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Suicide Prevention, launched by the Centre of Best Practice in Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Suicide Prevention (CBPATSISP), is an online tool containing more than 400 resources and links for culturally responsive suicide prevention and social and emotional wellbeing support.
Professor Pat Dudgeon, Director of the CBPATSISP, said the manual would help communities and professionals quickly identify culturally responsive materials to support their work.
“We consulted with communities, clinicians and funders, and we also met with individuals and groups representing Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander youth, crisis support and post-vention,” Professor Dudgeon said.
“People told us they need help navigating the information that is out there on the internet, to know what is current, safe and relevant to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people. So we have curated the Manual as a one-stop hub to provide real, practical guidance to different user groups.”
“The unacceptable rate of suicide in our communities is a consequence of colonisation, intergenerational trauma, continuing social disadvantage and systemic racism,” Professor Dudgeon said.
“By responding to the distinctive cultural and spiritual wellbeing needs of our people, and not just considering suicide a mental health issue, the resources in the Manual have the potential to save lives.”
Professor Dudgeon, a Bardi woman from the Kimberley told NIRS news, the Manual is freely accessible to all, and invites input and feedback from mob across Australia.
Director of the CBPATSISP, Professor Pat Dudgeon
If you or someone you know needs help or support, you can contact your local Aboriginal Community-Controlled Organisation or
- Lifeline: 131 114
- Kids Helpline: 1800 551 800
- Mensline: 1300 78 99 78
- Beyondblue 1300 22 46 36
- Q Life 1800 18 45 27
- Open Arms Veterans & Families Counselling 1800 01 10 46
- The National Indigenous Critical Response Service 1800 80 58 01