To mark this year's Suicide Prevention Day, we look at how front-line security professionals respond to these critical situations.
Everyone has a role in preventing suicide. As one of the most prevalent and preventable causes of death in the UK, it is a topic most of us are affected by.
As a generally public-facing industry, private security professionals interact with many people each day and manage a range of challenging situations in the name of keeping people safe.
It is an important role with great levels of responsibility, at times requiring a calm and efficient response to critical situations.
One of the most important and underrated skills for those working in private security is communication.
Much of the training, at any level of the industry, focuses on crucial communication skills such as how to de-escalate a situation.
This ranges from how to adopt non-threatening body language, to how to speak to and calm someone who is in a vulnerable or compromised state.
People are often reluctant to intervene, for many reasons, including a fear of not knowing what to say. It is important to remember, there is no specific formula: empathy, compassion, genuine concern, and a desire to help are key to preventing a tragedy.
Taking a minute to reach out to someone could change the course of someone's life.
World Suicide Prevention Day
World Suicide Prevention Day is held each year on 10 September and is an awareness raising event organised by International Association for Suicide Prevention (IASP) and the World Health Organisation (WHO).
More than 800,000 people take their lives each year across the world. In the UK and ROI, more than 6,000 people die by suicide a year - an average of 18 a day.
Reaching out to people who are going through a difficult time can be a game changer. People who are feeling low or suicidal often feel worthless and think that no-one cares.
Small things like hearing from friends or family, feeling listened to or just being told that 'it's ok to talk' can make a huge difference.
When a person reaches a point where they are focused on taking their life, they've often lost sight of trying to find a way through their problems. Samaritans
This period usually only lasts a short while and often it doesn't take a huge amount to bring someone back from that decision – something as simple as saying, 'it's ok to talk' can be enough to move someone out of suicidal crisis
Whatever you're going through, you always have support. There are a number of agencies you can call at any time:
- Samaritans – 116 123
- Campaign Against Living Miserably (CALM) for men - call 0800 58 58 58
- Papyrus (for people under 35) - call 0800 068 41 41
- Childline (for children and young people under 19) - call 0800 1111
- Mind – call 0300 123 3393
Who else you can talk to?
If you find it difficult to talk to someone you know, you could:
- call your GP – ask for an emergency appointment
- call 111 out of hours – they will help you find the support and help you need
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