Ground realities in building effective aboriginal suicide prevention strategies

Anton N. Isaacs, Pat Dudgeon

Research output: Contribution to journalEditorialpeer-review


Aboriginal people in Australia take their lives at rates that are twice that of non-Aboriginal people (Australian Bureau of Statistics, 2012). Although there is a National Strategy for the prevention of Aboriginal suicide (Australian Government, 2013), there is currently little evidence on effective suicide prevention strategies (Ridani et al., 2015). This is probably due to several reasons. For instance, Aboriginal suicidology is considered different from that of suicidology of mainstream populations (Elliott-Farrelly, 2004) and hence requires a unique approach. Factors associated with Aboriginal suicide are remarkably complex and almost always include intergenerational trauma, grief and loss (Australian Government, 2013) as well as obstacles to seeking help (Isaacs, Sutton, Hearn, Wanganeen, & Dudgeon, 2016). Furthermore, factors that may promote social and emotional well-being such as social connectedness and strengthening family bonds (Hunter & Milroy, 2006; Tsey, Patterson, Whiteside, Baird, & Baird, 2002) require a whole of community effort with substantial support from mainstream stakeholders.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)79-81
Number of pages3
JournalAdvances in Mental Health
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 2016
Externally publishedYes


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