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New Service Joins Prevention Of Youth Suicide

Media Statement By
Tony Ryall
Minister of Youth Affairs

16 June, 1999

New Service Joins Prevention Of Youth Suicide

Youth Affairs Minister Tony Ryall, today launched a new service that will support people and organisations working to prevent youth suicide.

Speaking at the launch of Suicide Prevention Information New Zealand (SPINZ), Mr Ryall said that "suicide is second only to motor vehicle crashes as the main cause of death among young New Zealanders aged 15-24 years of age".

"We know the statistics. Unfortunately, solutions are far more elusive", said Mr Ryall.

"The Ministries of Youth Affairs, Health and Te Puni Kokiri have been working together to develop the New Zealand Youth Suicide Prevention Strategy and specific youth initiatives to address youth mental health problems.

"The National strategy draws together and coordinates the wide range of initiatives already in place. It also recommends new work to be done.

"SPINZ, which we are launching today, is a direct outcome of the National Strategy.

"Unfortunately, in this area there aren't easy and straightforward answers. But there is a lot of information that can help us understand suicide better and move towards solutions. It was from the need to disseminate this information that SPINZ grew.

"SPINZ has been developed by Youth Affairs with support from the Ministry of Health and Te Puni Kokiri.

"It will provide a wide range of information relating to mental health issues, with a particular focus on young people, and the prevention of youth suicide.

"SPINZ will be delivered by the Mental Health Foundation in collaboration with The Centre For Youth Health, and will draw on the specialist skills of the staff in both these organisations to support its work", said Mr Ryall.

ENDS

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