The number of suicides in New Zealand has reached its highest-ever level, with the Chief Coroner reporting 685 people dying in the year to June 30 2019.
That compares to the 2018 road toll where 377 lives were lost.
Of those who killed themselves, 73 percent were men and 27 percent were women.
A quarter were under the age of 25, 64 percent were aged 25 to 64, and 11 percent were aged 65 and over.
Alongside the desperately sad loss of those 685 people is an absence of meaningful agreement regarding how to reverse this awful upward trend.
Over the next few months, the “Straight Talk” column is going to include a brief series of articles entitled “Suicide Lies”, whereby commonly reported aspects of thinking and feeling, as shared by people who have contemplated or attempted suicide, are directly challenged.
It is hoped that in the challenge, the lie will be exposed to those who may have not previously recognised it for the falsehood that it is.
Steve is the Director of Relationship Matters Ltd. He holds two applied Bachelor's degrees (Counselling & Addiction) and a P.G. Dip. in Applied Social Practice. Steve is married with two children and lives in West Auckland.