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Chamber and committees

Equalities, Human Rights and Civil Justice Committee

Suicide Prevention Strategy

The Equalities Human Rights and Civil Justice Committee is running a short inquiry into the Scottish Government and COSLA’s Suicide Prevention Strategy 2022-2032.


A recent report shows that the age standard mortality rate for Scotland for 2018 - 2022 had increased to 14.4 suicides per 100,000 population from a rate of 13.3 in 2013 - 2017.

The report also showed significant inequalities in the suicide statistics:

  • the rate of suicide mortality in the most deprived areas in Scotland was 2.6 times higher than in the least deprived areas in Scotland - this is higher than the deprivation gap of 1.8 times for all causes of death
  • the mortality rate for suicides in 2022 was 2.9 times higher for males, compared to females

In addition, last month another report showed that the suicide rate in Scotland has been consistently higher than the suicide rate in Northern Ireland, Wales and England.

Scottish Government and COSLA’s Suicide Prevention Strategy

In 2022, the Scottish Government and the Convention of Scottish Local Authorities (COSLA) published Scotland’s Suicide Prevention Strategy 2022-2032: Creating Hope Together in 2022. Published alongside this strategy was an Action Plan covering the period 2022 to 2025. A Year 1 Delivery Plan (2023-24) was published in December 2023.

The Strategy's vision is to reduce the number of suicide deaths in Scotland. It also aims to tackle the inequalities which contribute to suicide.

The Strategy also outlines four long term outcomes.

In this short inquiry, the Committee aims to:

  • scrutinise the Suicide Prevention Strategy, its anticipated outcomes and progress to date.
  • assess whether the Scottish Government is allocating enough money to the Strategy
  • investigate whether budget spend in other areas of Government will help or hinder the Strategy's delivery
  • establish to what degree the Strategy accounts for the unequal distribution of deaths from suicide across different populations groups
  • determine the extent to which the strategy acknowledges the voices of people with lived experience

Your views

To support its inquiry, the Committee is launching a Call for Views. This will be open to responses from 1 March to 29 March 2024. 

Share your views with the Committee


The Committee held private informal engagement sessions with those with lived experience to help inform the inquiry.  The sessions took place at the Scottish Parliament on 7 May 2024 supported by external organisations.

Notes from 7 May 2024 engagement sessions


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