Choose Life campaign launch

SPREADING THE MESSAGE: North Lanarkshire Council's Choose Life coordinator Greg Burgess is pictured with Inspector Stewart Hurry. North Lanarkshire retailer Abdul Majid is also pictured promoting the campaign with Francis McLachlan of the Alcohol Addiction Service.
SPREADING THE MESSAGE: North Lanarkshire Council's Choose Life coordinator Greg Burgess is pictured with Inspector Stewart Hurry. North Lanarkshire retailer Abdul Majid is also pictured promoting the campaign with Francis McLachlan of the Alcohol Addiction Service.

A CAMPAIGN to create awareness of and prevent suicide has been launched in North Lanarkshire.

The Choose Life campaign, which is a partnership between North Lanarkshire Council, Strathclyde Police and NHS Lanarkshire, will use carrier bags to highlight the message, “Suicide don’t hide it talk about it” and the crisis numbers for Samaritans and Breathing Space.

The reason behind this work is to help promote these crisis services in a way that people cannot miss.

People who are feeling low and may be contemplating suicide increase the amount of alcohol they drink.

Working in partnership with local off–sales staff will ensure that people are given these brightly coloured bags and that they are encouraged to talk to someone about any suicidal thoughts or other issues that are affecting their own health and wellbeing.

Police officers are also distributing beer mats in pubs across the authority promoting the same message of “spill it” and “stop bottling it up”.

Inspector Stewart Hurry, from North Lanarkshire policing division, said: “We are delighted to be working alongside these very important services that people can use if they need someone to talk to.

“It can be about how to get help for themselves or how best to help someone you know who is going through a difficult time.

“As police officers we deal with the devastating effects that suicide has on the individual, family, friends and the community and being able to help keep people safe in this manner is one of the reasons we are here.

“We are fully behind the campaign and hope people see the bags and beer mats and make that call as it could be the best call they ever made.”

If you are worried about someone or feel you need some help please call Samaritans on 08457 90 90 90 (lines open 24 hours) or Breathing Space on 0800 83 85 87.