Celebration of World Suicide Prevention Day at the United Nations Headquarters

 

World Suicide Prevention Day is held every year on 10 September as an initiative of the International Association for Suicide Prevention (IASP) and is cosponsored by the World Health Organization (WHO). This year’s theme was Suicide Prevention in Different Cultures to remind us that suicidal behavior is influenced by cultural, religious, legal, historical, and philosophical factors that must be considered in the development of prevention programs. Suicide, then, must be understood within the cultural context of the populations involved, and suicide prevention programs must be adapted to that context.

The public conference, held at United Nations Headquarters in New York on 20 September, consisted of a panel of distinguished experts and representatives of civil society organizations. It was attended by over 100 people, who actively participated in the event through comments and questions.

Werner Obermeyer, from the World Health Organization’s office in New York offered the welcoming remarks. Next, Brian Mishara, President of the International Association for Suicide Prevention, gave an introduction and coordinated the panel of experts. The Senior Adviser on Mental Health of the Pan American Health Organization (PAHO/WHO), Jorge J. Rodríguez, gave a presentation on the current situation of mental health in Latin America and the Caribbean, providing current data on suicide mortality trends in the Americas.

For more information on World Suicide Prevention Day, we recommend visiting the IASP website