A federal framework for suicide prevention will be overseen by the Government of Canada as a result of a private member’s bill that became law in December 2012. The Government of Canada is responsible for establishing a framework that recognizes suicide as an issue of mental health and public health and therefore, a health and safety priority.
The framework requires the federal government to assign an overseeing body to:
- provide guidelines to improve public awareness and knowledge about suicide,
- disseminate information about suicide, including information concerning its prevention,
- make existing statistics about suicide and related risk factors publically available,
- promote collaboration and knowledge exchange across domains, sectors, regions and jurisdictions,
- define best practices for the prevention of suicide, and
- promote the use of research and evidence-based practices for the prevention of suicide.
In the next several months, the federal government is required to undertake consultations with relevant non-governmental organizations, entities within the governments of the provinces and territories, and federal departments to share information and align the elements of the framework.
See the Federal Framework for Suicide Prevention Act (Bill C-300) available on the Parliament of Canada website.