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More people in Wales take their own lives than are killed in road crashes according to new report

More people in Wales take their own lives than are killed in car crashes, according to a new report by Samaritans Cymru.

Credit: Samaritans Cymru

The report highlights the link between poverty and suicide.

The report found that each year, between 300 and 350 people die by suicide in Wales, which is around three times the number killed in road accidents.

350
Up to 350 people die by suicide each year in Wales.

It is the most common cause of death for men aged 20-49 and the leading cause of death of people under 35. Alongside this, almost a quarter of the Welsh population (23%) live in poverty.

In 2016, Samaritans released a research report titled, 'Dying from Inequality', which found that suicide rates are two to three times higher in the most deprived neighbourhoods compared to the most affluent.

Admissions to hospital following self-harm are two times higher in the most deprived neighbourhoods compared to the most affluent.

The report says unemployment can increase stress in a local community, break down social connections and increase feelings of hopelessness and depression, all of which are seen as risk factors for suicidal behaviour.

Samaritans Cymru have developed a number of recommendations which they believe need to be adopted in order to tackle the relationship between suicide and poverty in Wales including more public information about debt management, bereavement and loneliness.

Suicide is not inevitable; there are actions we can take so that difficult times do not result in people dying.

We also want to highlight that the power of communities in Wales.

The skills and abilities of the people within them are a major asset which needs to be recognised, supported and utilised.

Communities in Wales already have the solutions; we just need to forge the links.

We also need to realise, as a society, that deprivation is closer to us than we think; we must stop seeing these communities as separate to us.

– Sarah Stone, Executive Director for Wales, Samaritans Cymru