The Liberals used their opposition day to move a motion calling on the government to formulate and fund a national strategy on suicide prevention and they used all nine of their opportunities in Question Period to press the government on various facets of the problem. In an op-ed this morning, interim leader Bob Rae laid out the reasons for concern.
Today, 10 Canadians will take their own lives, a per capita rate three times that of the United States’, largely due to the staggering number of suicides among aboriginal Canadians. In fact, suicide is the leading cause of death in men ages 25 to 29 and 40 to 44, women ages 30 to 34, and the second cause of death among adolescents.
It is no surprise, then, that all of us have been touched by suicide, have lost friends and loved ones, and have tried to figure out why lives that seemed together and well-focused are suddenly ended. But the bewilderment of silence and pain that surrounds mental health has to end. It is no longer just a personal question; it is now a political question.