Young male suicide numbers down in Merseyside

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Suicide rates among young men in Merseyside have more than halved over the past decade, according to the latest figures.

Office of National Statistics data show suicides of 15 to 34-year-olds fell from a peak of 48 in 2000 to 19 in 2009.

Across the UK in 2009, 4,304 men killed themselves, while 1,371 women took their own lives.

Merseyside male suicide charity Calm said depressed men need to seek advice.

'Feel stronger'

Calm, which stands for Campaign Against Living Miserably, was launched in Liverpool 11 years ago to help young men share their worries through its helpline and website.

Spokesman Simon Howes said: "About three men commit suicide in the UK every day.

"If you go through something and you come out the other side, you obviously feel stronger and better for it because you've conquered it.

"If you can aspire to thinking that I'm going to smash this one and if I need to get people on board, or get things off my chest, or get some advice, then you can and that's OK.

"Calm was established to help men get things off their chest by promoting a helpline and website that is credible and which they can trust when they are ready to sort their head out.

"We believe our work has helped to bring these numbers down and change the pressures and expectations that are often placed on our region's 190,000 young men for the better."

Dr Sandra Davies, associate director of Public Health for Liverpool Primary Care Trust, said: "These figures are fantastic news, and it's also really encouraging that we are making so much progress locally.

"Calm is a trailblazing campaign which leads the way in how taboo issues such as suicide are addressed, working to point young men towards the help they need, when they feel they need it."

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