Opposition calls for suicide prevention strategy

An Opposition motion for a suicide prevention strategy received the full support of the P.E.I. Legislature Tuesday evening.

About 15 Islanders take their own lives every year, but the province does not track suicide attempts. Progressive Conservative MLA James Aylward said more resources need to be devoted to the issue.

"We need to understand, first and foremost, why this is happening," said Aylward.

"If we had the proper data in place. If we're tracking, not only the actual amount of deaths by suicide on an annual basis, but the attempts, the root cause of the attempts, we could start to bore to the fundamental reasons and ensure that we're directing the resources to address those reasons."

Health Minister Rob Henderson suggested more resources could be applied to the issue through the province's current review of mental health services.

"This will be an evolving process to make sure we get our numbers, make sure that we're dealing with this in as effective a way as we possibly can," said Henderson.

Members of the P.E.I. Legislature unanimously supported the motion. This renews a call first made seven years ago.

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