With the WHO (World Health Organisation) estimating that over 703,000 people take their own life every year, suicide is becoming a world wide issue, that needs to be addressed. In honour of World Suicide Prevention Month, we thought we’d take a look at the facts around suicide.

  • Roughly one person takes their own life every 40 seconds somewhere in the world
  • WHO estimate that for every life lost to suicide, 20 attempts of suicide take place.
  • Suicide is the fourth leading cause of death in 15-19 year olds.
  • Ingestion of pesticide, hanging and firearms are among the most common methods of suicide globally.
  • The highest suicide rate in is men between the age of 45-49 (in the UK).

At Employees Health, our mission as a company is to promote well being and wellness in the workplace. We believe and know that the employer has a key role to play in the prevention of suicide and promotion of wellbeing within the workplace.


People in work spend about one-third of their lives at their place of employment. Colleagues and line managers can provide an important social and emotional support network, built on shared experiences. Employers are in a unique position to help colleagues understand the importance of wellbeing and good mental health, and the knowledge of how to keep safe and well and how to spot the signs of being unwell.

While the link between suicide and mental disorders (in particular, depression and alcohol use disorders) is well established in high-income countries, many suicides happen impulsively in moments of crisis with a breakdown in the ability to deal with life stresses, such as financial problems, relationship break-up or chronic pain and illness.

The obligation of the employer is to ensure they are doing the following for their employees:

  • Promoting good mental health and removing stigma around mental health problems.
  • Reducing stress at work.
  • Preventing and taking action against bullying and harassment.
  • Extending support and psychological health services.
  • Educating and training managers and other key staff.

If you are struggling with your mental health, help is available right now, below we list a few of the resources available

Samaritans – for everyone
Call 116 123
Campaign Against Living Miserably (CALM) – for men
Call 0800 58 58 58 – 5pm to midnight every day
Papyrus – for people under 35
Call 0800 068 41 41 – Monday to Friday 9am to 10pm, weekends and bank holidays 2pm to 10pm
Text 07860 039967
Childline – for children and young people under 19

Call 0800 1111 – the number will not show up on your phone bill

Some signs to look out for that may indicate that someone is having suicidal thoughts are the following:

  • Talking about feeling hopeless and worthless
  • Talking about being a burden to others
  • Acting anxious, agitated or reckless
  • Displaying extreme mood swings
  • Talking about getting revenge

It’s important to remember that suicide is preventable if we work together, if we listen and we demonstrate a willingness to help. Suicide really has become a rather taboo subject and only when it happens do we acknowledge it as an issue, or only when it hits close to us do we realise that it’s not just another number on a data sheet. Suicide is real, it’s happening now, somewhere in the world. The impacts of suicide to the people surrounding the person who takes their own life are long lasting. Do your bit today by checking in on a friend to see how they are doing, just because they appear to be fine, doesn’t mean they are. So let’s work together to prevent suicide and protect each other.

If you would like to discuss how we can help improve your mental wellbeing, then get in touch today or if you simply need a chat, we’re also here.