Rethink Mental Illness warns 'more action desperately needed' as suicide rates remain high

19 December 2023

The Office for National Statistics has published its annual suicide statistics for 2022, showing that suicide rates remain high. 

Lourdes Colclough, Head of Suicide Prevention at Rethink Mental Illness, said:

“Data on the prevalence of suicide can’t capture the immense turmoil felt by someone before they take their own life, or the profound grief of loved ones as they struggle in the aftermath. But what today’s statistics do tell us is that the number of suicides still isn’t falling, with more action desperately needed. Suicide is complex and there is rarely one single trigger, with factors including financial issues, social isolation, housing insecurity and problems at work, school, or home. But we can’t lose sight of the fact that suicide is preventable, and key to this is more work from the government to tackle the drivers of mental ill-health so that people do not become desperately unwell in the first place, alongside proper funding for mental health, social care and other relevant services – including the voluntary sector - so that everyone can access support when they need it. With a rise in suicide among young women over the last decade, and the rate of suicide in men remaining staggeringly high, we should also remember the need to determine the risks and preventative measures for specific groups, though the government's recent launch of a suicide monitoring system should go some way in addressing this.”