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Health takes leadership role in suicide prevention

Wednesday 27 April 2005

Budget 2005

Health to take leadership role in suicide prevention initiatives

The shift from a youth to an all-ages suicide prevention strategy will see the Ministry of Health taking over administrative leadership for the government's suicide prevention initiatives from the Ministry of Youth Development, Associate Health Minister Jim Anderton announced today.

From July 1, the Ministry of Health will become responsible for leading and coordinating suicide prevention initiatives, including current responsibility for the New Zealand Youth Suicide Prevention Strategy and the draft New Zealand Suicide Prevention Strategy.

Since 2002, the Ministry of Youth Development has provided a leadership role in coordinating youth suicide prevention. Jim Anderton said today that responsibility now shifts to the Ministry of Health because it has a stronger influence across all population groups, not just youth.

Funding of $9.1 million (GST exclusive) over four years will be transferred to the Ministry of Health in order to continue to support existing suicide prevention activities and to develop new ones.

Of this money, $1.8 million (GST exclusive) over four years is new money to lead and coordinate suicide prevention in New Zealand and was secured by the Progressive Party as part of its Budget 2005 public health initiatives.

Some funding will be retained by the Ministry of Youth Development to continue having a role in youth suicide prevention to fund policy advice and other activities on youth suicide prevention.

The Ministry of Youth Development will continue to have a strong role in promoting youth suicide prevention and will work with other Government departments such as Child, Youth and Family, Internal Affairs and the ministries of Education and Health, to promote actions that reach young people and their families in the community.

ENDS

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