Sinn Féin TD for Clare Violet-Anne Wynne organised suicide prevention training for her team based in her constituency of 64 Parnell Street, Ennis.
Her staff completed the training last Thursday with QPR facilitators.
QPR is a method that involves asking a question; persuading the individual that there is another solution outside of suicide and referring them to relevant supports and services.
Teachta Wynne said:
“Suicide has long been a plague on this island. Here, in Clare it is a particularly endemic issue and there have been many clusters over the years.
“Mental health services are shamefully under-resourced and with no other emergency out-of-hours services available people are often left with no choice but to present to the Emergency Department in UHL – which is totally inappropriate.
“As an elected representative, I am constantly engaging with constituents who are in very distressed states.
“After two years of the fear and isolation this pandemic has caused, people are even more on edge.
“That coupled with the cost of living crisis which is pushing people to the brink, I have noticed a steady increase in the number of people contacting my office who are genuinely struggling with their mental health.
“I organised this training for my team because it is so important to be confident to intervene when we suspect someone is suicidal. Literally even asking the question, and bursting the bubble of stigma, shame and silence can save someone’s life.
“The facilitators from the QPR Institute were fantastic and I would strongly recommend any employer or group to organise it for your work team.”