While the topic is difficult for most, experts believe the methods and risk factors of suicide have to be discussed if the country is to see a fall in the numbers of persons who kill themselves annually.
Accorded to police data, 61 people committed suicide in Jamaica last year. Of that number, 56 were males and five females.
Forty of those males committed suicide by hanging. Ingesting poison was the second highest method used.
St Ann was listed as the police division with the highest number of reported suicides for 2018.
“Hanging is what is most common. Majority of those in Jamaica die by hanging. In the context of the United States, where the gun is more readily available, 51 per cent of those who die by suicide in the United States do so by gun, so it is the means of death that is more readily available,” said Dr Donovan Thomas, founder and president of Choose Life International.
Thomas, who was addressing journalists at a Gleaner Editors’ Forum last Thursday ahead of today’s World Suicide Prevention Day, pointed out that the majority of people who commit suicide locally are men in the age range 25-44, most of whom are single. Of note is that while more women attempt suicide, more men follow through.