Together, let’s create hope – suicide prevention strategy 2022 to 2032: easy reading

Building Hope Together: Scottish Suicide Prevention Strategy 2022-2023: Easy Reading


Suicide is what we call when a person ends their own life.

The Scottish Government and the Convention of Scottish Local Authorities (COSLA) have developed a strategy to reduce suicides in Scotland. A strategy is a long term plan for the future. This strategy is for the next 10 years.

They also drafted an action plan. The action plan will be in place for 3 years.

Both documents are based on what people have said is necessary to reduce the number of suicides. The strategy defines the long term plans while the action plan defines what will happen to help reduce the number of suicides in the short term.

Suicide is complicated. It is caused by many things. The plan examines what can be done by the government, and others, to help reduce the number of suicides.

We will address broader issues like poverty and social isolation. We will look at things like criminal justice, violence against women, and homelessness. These will help reduce the number of suicides.

We want to make sure everyone is able to work together to help prevent suicide in Scotland.

More and more people are now talking about their mental health. But things happened that affected people in Scotland. Such as COVID-19[feminine] and the cost of living crisis.

Suicide can affect anyone. It doesn’t matter their age or gender or where they live. But some people are at higher risk of suicide.

This plan will help everyone. But we know there is specific work to be done to help those most at risk of suicide.

Our vision – how we want things to be

We want people to work together to prevent suicide.

We want people to know where to get help when they need it.

We want people to know how to help someone who is feeling suicidal.

We want people to get support when they know someone who has been affected by suicide.

Our principles

We want to help everyone in Scotland. But we should look for other ways to help people who are at higher risk of suicide. These may be people who live in poverty or who come from different backgrounds.

People who have had a suicidal experience should help make decisions about suicide prevention work.

People with lived experience can include people who have attempted suicide or people who care for them. It can also be people who have known someone who committed suicide. These can be individuals, friends, family members, communities and staff.

Children and young people should be involved in decisions that affect them. They should help create services and new works that help children and young people.

We should try new ways to help prevent suicide. We will test and listen to experts and people with lived experience.

Our goals for 2032

We want a Scotland where people are safe from suicide.

We want a Scotland where everyone is aware of suicide. Everyone should know what they can do to help themselves and others.

We want to have a Scotland where people can get the support they need.

We want to make sure that we listen to people who have been affected by suicide.

How this plan was developed

We talked to people about what they would like to see in a new plan. We held online events and circulated a quiz so people could tell us what to think.

We also spoke to organizations that understand suicide. We made sure to include people with lived experience.

We reported on what people told us. We then sought advice from experts in suicide prevention and mental health.

We spoke to groups and communities that are at higher risk of suicide. This allowed us to write a first version of the plans.

After writing the first version, we asked people to tell us what they thought of it. People told us what to keep and what to change. It helped us to write a final version.

What we know about suicide

We are still learning about the best ways to prevent suicide. Information and evidence show that suicide is not caused by one thing.

There are many reasons why someone thinks about suicide. These include what is going on in their lives, the type of place they live and their experience of living there, and their physical and mental health.

It is important to examine the things that prevent someone from committing suicide. It can be connections with other people, family and work. People are at higher risk of suicide if they are unemployed, have broken or difficult relationships, feel hopeless and isolated.

Plan delivery

The Scottish Government and COSLA will see to it that all this work is done.

To do this, we have set up a Delivery Collective. This is a group of people and organizations that will connect and work together to help prevent suicide.


The Scottish government has pledged to double funding from £1.4m to £2.8m. This will help support the activities that are in the action plan.

Support available

breathing space

Service open: Monday to Thursday – 6 p.m. to 2 a.m. Weekend – Friday 6 p.m. to Monday 6 a.m.

Telephone: 0800 83 85 87

Online chat:


A helpline for anyone feeling weak or contemplating suicide.

Telephone: 116 123


NHS 24 mental health center

Call 111 for urgent mental health assessment and support 24/7.

Telephone: 111

child line

A free service for children and young people whenever they need support or advice. Open 24/7.

Telephone: 0800 1111