Jackie Baillie, MSP for Dumbarton Constituency, has commented on the newly released statistics on probable suicide. These statistics show that there is still a huge disparity between the most and least deprived areas in Scotland. The figures showed that the suicide rate in Scotland’s most deprived areas is three times the rate in the least deprived areas. The probable suicide rate (both crude and age-sex standardised) in the period 2016 – 2020 was three and a half times higher in the most deprived areas compared to the least deprived areas.
West Dunbartonshire, has seen a year on year increase in the number of deaths by suicide, rising from 6 in 2017 to 17 in 2020. However, the area also has the largest change in mortality rate between 2000-2004 and 2016-2020, which decreased from 21.9 deaths per 100,000 to 13.8 deaths per 100,000 (down by 37%).
Jackie Baillie MSP said:
“Today’s figures prove that many communities across the country are being badly let down by the Scottish Government.
“We know that the pandemic has led to a sharp rise in mental health issues and that those needing treatment have faced long waits.
“Behind every figure is a tragic story of someone who has lost their life to suicide and a family who has lost a loved one.
“The SNP has the power to make life better for those in Scotland’s most deprived areas and today’s figures demonstrate the need for immediate action.
“The recent rise in the number of suicides happening in West Dunbartonshire is a tragedy and urgent attention is needed. While it is positive that West Dunbartonshire has seen an overall drop in suicide rates in the last 20 years the fact that it is now on an upward trend is troubling.
“If action is not taken now to resource services properly to ensure people are helped quickly, we will face a human catastrophe in Scotland – there can be no cause for delay.
“Today we will hear about figures, but Scottish Labour’s thoughts remain with all those who have lost a loved one.”