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Young People: Suicide

Volume 473: debated on Wednesday 12 March 2008

To ask the Secretary of State for Children, Schools and Families how many people under the age of 21 years committed suicide in 2007; and what research has been undertaken by his Department on suicide risk factors and methods of prevention of suicide among young people. (192333)

I have been asked to reply.

The number of deaths from suicide and undetermined injury among people aged under 20 in England in the latest available year, 2006, was 128. Data from the Office for National Statistics is provided in five-year age bands, not single years, so information on suicides by those under 21 is not available.

Research conducted by a number of organisations, including the Department, outline many of the risk factors associated with suicide and these helped form the basis of the suicide prevention strategy for England.

The Department has also funded, through the National Institute for Health Research, a programme entitled “Collaborative learning on the web. The role of online communities in public and professional health education: an exploration based on self-harm”. This study aims to support collaboration between young people and health professionals in the production of health information to young people who self-harm.