Prime Minister's Statement on World Suicide Prevention Day

September 11, 2023 11:42 am

PHILIPSBURG, Sint Maarten— On this World Suicide Prevention Day, I wish to recognize the profound impact that suicide has on individuals, families, and communities.

Suicide is an issue that touches the lives of far too many, and it is never something easy to deal with. My heart goes out to all the parents, family members, and friends who have experienced the profound loss of a loved one to suicide. Your pain is immeasurable, and you are not alone in your grief.

And for those who have tragically lost someone to suicide, please know that it is not your fault. The pain you feel is immense, but blaming yourself is not the answer. Let us come together as a compassionate and supportive community, extending our empathy and understanding to one another.

Depression and other mental health challenges are often invisible to the naked eye, making it difficult for many to seek the help they need. But remember, you are never weak for wanting to end your pain, and you should never bear this burden alone.

To those who are grappling with thoughts of suicide, please understand that seeking help is a sign of strength, not weakness. Reach out to someone you trust, whether it’s a friend, family member, or a mental health professional. There are people and resources available to support you on your journey towards healing and hope. There is help in the form of asking your house doctor for a referral to a mental health specialist, which is covered under the SZV.

I urge all of us to take a moment to check in on our loved ones and friends. Reach out to those you care about, even if they seem fine on the surface. A simple conversation can make all the difference, letting them know that you are there for them and that they are not alone in their struggles.

Later in the month, on September 29, there will be a Suicide Prevention Awareness Lantern Light hosted by the Men’s Mental Health Foundation. The meeting point is Great Bay Beach form 8:00pm to 9:00pm. The Government would like to encourage the general public and our youth to take part in and show support for this initiative.

On this World Suicide Prevention Day, let us recommit ourselves to creating a world where mental health is prioritized, where stigma is replaced with compassion, and where everyone feels safe reaching out for help. Together, we can make a difference and save lives.