Mount Isa walks for world suicide prevention day

Citizens of Mount Isa joined a worldwide walk for suicide prevention on Monday evening.

The walk is part of the worldwide campaign of awareness for Suicide Prevention Day held September 10 every year.

Organised by the Mental Health Network in Mount Isa marchers congregated at Frank Aston car park and then walked down Rodeo Drive to the Civic Centre lawns where they heard speeches and read out a pledge against suicide.

Mayor Joyce McCulloch’s said the day dedicated to the prevention of suicide was of enormous benefit to communities such as ours.

“It is a reminder to us to take the time out of our very busy lives to ensure the people around us are okay and that should be every day,” Cr McCulloch said.

“Suicide should not just affect family and friends it affects those that have the jobs that deal with the after-effects, the emergency services such as the police, the ambulance, the firies, the SES, medical staff, our church ministers and the support services.

“I pay tribute to you all. You are all committed to our community’s safety and wellbeing.”

Police Sgt Sean Wade said suicide affected everyone in the community including responders.

“We all get affected in different ways whether we know the person involved or not,” Sgt Wade said.

“It takes no time at all to say hello and ask someone if they are okay in your workplace or at home  or walking down the street.”

Sgt Wade said that in his three years in Mount Isa he found it an inviting community and very friendly

“That’s what we Queenslanders are about and Mount Isa personifies that,” he said.

“So even if you don’t know that person you are walking past it takes none of your time and no effort and it could make a huge difference to that person’s day just by smiling, saying g’day and asking if they are okay.”

Local community member Vicky also gave a moving first hand account of what is like to lose a family member to suicide.

“If you know someone who has lost a loved one, don’t be afraid to say that loved one’s name,” she said.

“It is important they are not forgotten.”

If you are experiencing suicidal or depressive thoughts or know someone who is, contact Lifeline on 13 11 14.