About the Inquiry
At its meeting on 27 March 2018 the Committee agreed to hold a one off evidence session on suicide prevention in Scotland on 12 June 2018. This session followed the Scottish Government’s consultation on its draft Suicide Prevention Action Plan and preceded its formal publication, which is expected at the end of June 2018.
The last Scottish Government Suicide Prevention Strategy ran from 2013 to 2016. On 8 March 2018 the Scottish Government launched a seven week consultation on its new draft Suicide Prevention Action Plan. The consultation period ended on 30 April 2018 and the views expressed during this process were used to inform the development of the Scottish Government’s final Suicide Action Plan due for publication at the end of June 2018.
The evidence session on suicide prevention provided the Committee with an opportunity to hear views on the Scottish Government’s draft Suicide Prevention Action Plan prior to its finalisation at the end of June.
The Committee conducted a targeted call for views from relevant organisations and invited representatives of some of these organisations to take part in the evidence session on 12 June. In addition to this evidence session the Committee also held an informal session with a small group of people who have been affected, either directly or indirectly, by issues around suicide.
12 June – Evidence sessions on the draft Suicide Prevention Action Plan. The following organisations have been invited to attend the formal evidence session:
> Brothers in Arms
> Samaritans in Scotland
> Mental Health Foundation Scotland
> National Farmers' Union Scotland (NFU Scotland)
> Joshua Nolan Foundation
A targeted call for views was launched on the 27 April with the following questions:
> To what extent should the Scottish Government's Suicide Prevention Plan address the issue of inequality?
> To what extent should the Scottish Government's Suicide Prevention Plan need a whole system approach?
> What actions should be prioritised in the forthcoming strategy?
> Should there be a focus on specific at risk groups and if so what groups would be appropriate?
The deadline for written submissions is 21 May.
The following written submissions have been received:
In addition to the targeted call for views, the following written submissions have been received:
In advance of the Committee's draft Suicide Prevention Action Plan evidence session on 12 June, Maureen Watt MSP, Minister for Mental Health, wrote to the Convener on 8 June 2018 with a progress update:
Following the evidence session on 12 June, the Convener wrote to Maureen Watt MSP, Minister for Mental Health with the Committee's recommendations:
Following publication of the Scottish Government's "Scotland's Suicide Prevention Action Plan: Every Life Matters" on 8 August 2018, the Convener wrote to Clare Haughey MSP, Minister for Mental Health:
The Committee received a response from Clare Haughey MSP, Minister for Mental Health on 3 October 2018: