By Joshua Manning • 10 May 2022 • 2:36
Spain announces new suicide helpline active from May 10
Credit: Twitter @sanidadgob
“Mental Health is a priority of the Spanish Government’s public policies and, therefore, forms part of the Public Agenda to make it visible, to end the stigmas and taboos that exist around this reality and to break the silences that have weighed like a burden for years.” stated Carolina Darias talking on Spain’s new suicide helpline.
“The 024 line will be free, accessible, immediate, confidential and staffed by experts, to provide support both to people who may be suicidal and to their families and loved ones.”
“In addition, 024 will be connected to the emergency services of the different autonomous communities and cities to help those whose suffering is pushing them to the limit of their strength, because a person with suicidal behaviour does not want to die, but wants to stop suffering”.
Suicide is the leading cause of death in young people and, according to INE data, in 2020 there were 3,491 deaths by suicide in Spain, which was 7.4% more than in 2019.
The Minister of Health stressed that the 024 telephone number is a commitment of the President of the Government, Pedro Sánchez, and a demand from society, which has increased in recent years.
For the development of the 024 line, as well as future suicide prevention actions, an Advisory Committee has been created, made up of experts from different areas, who will contribute their experience and knowledge, taking into account all possible perspectives and voices, said the minister.
Spain’s suicide helpline will be staffed by experts to intervene in complex, high-risk situations.
In the first phase, the helpline will be managed by the Red Cross, while the Ministry of Health continues with the definitive tender for the service. The 024 team will have a service manager, 11 supervisors and 26 operators, all of them with experience and knowledge in the management of this type of intervention.
With the aim of ensuring that all citizens can use Spain’s 024 suicide helpline in conditions of equality and non-discrimination, the telephone is adapted and will include a video-interpretation service in sign language, as well as a telephone interpretation service that offers a solution to overcome language barriers by allowing real-time communication with people who speak another language.
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Originally from the UK, Joshua is based on the Costa Blanca and is a web reporter for the Euro Weekly News covering international and Spanish national news. Got a news story you want to share? Then get in touch at [email protected]
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