Who We Are

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Suicide prevention is everyone's business

Each year, more than 6,000 people take their lives in the UK. The male suicide rate is at its highest since 2001, and more middle aged men are taking their own lives now than in the last thirty years. This has to stop.

Suicide is not just a tragedy for the person who loses their life. It also shatters the lives of those left behind – families, friends and communities. There is no simple formula for reducing suicide because the risk factors are wide ranging and complex. Suicidal feelings and behaviour usually result from multiple issues in someone’s life and can be related to many different factors including demographics, social issues, settings or times of crisis. Given this complexity, we will only save more lives if all parts of society work together.

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Our Vision, Mission & Aims

The NSPA’s vision is that fewer lives are lost to suicide and anyone affected by suicide receives the best possible support.

Our mission is to get all parts of society working together to take action to reduce suicide and improve the support for those bereaved by suicide.

The difference we aim to make

We aim to work together to bring about the following outcomes:

  1. Reducing stigma: We want all parts of society talking about suicide and taking action to maintain good mental health, so that it is as normal as talking about and maintaining physical health.
  2. Encouraging help-seeking: We want more people who are experiencing emotional distress to seek help before they become suicidal.
  3. Providing the appropriate support: We want to ensure that when people in emotional distress seek help, they receive appropriate support from the people or organisations they approach and that they are offered appropriate options.
  4. Reducing access to means: We want it to be harder for people experiencing severe emotional distress to have access to the means to take their own life.
  5. Reducing the impact of suicide: We want to ensure that people affected by suicide get the support they need to cope with the impact on their life.
  6. Improving data & evidence: We want there to be better official data about suicide in England and more evidence about effective suicide prevention. Those working in suicide prevention should find it easier to obtain this data and evidence.
  7. Working together: We want organisations with an interest in suicide prevention collaborating with each other to make a bigger difference.

What we do

The NSPA operates by:

  • Delivering commitment & influence: We identify public, private and voluntary organisations that can make a difference and we invite them to join us and take action.
  • Mobilising action: We identify the most important issues to work on and we facilitate projects to address them. Taking action is the most important contribution a member can make to NSPA.
  • Building an active network: We facilitate collaborations between organisations who can achieve more by working together.
  • Sharing best practice: We share information about what organisations are doing to prevent suicide, support those bereaved by suicide and promote good practice in these areas.
  • Raising awareness & build knowledge: We work to improve the quality and accessibility of data about suicide and help improve the evidence base about what works in suicide prevention and bereavement support. We share this intelligence with organisations that can make a difference.
  • Improving support: We share information about support available for people in distress and those bereaved or affected by suicide, to increase options and raise awareness of what’s out there.

The NSPA’s Declaration sets out in full who we are and what we aim to deliver.

You can also read about how the NSPA started out life as a ‘Call to Action’ for suicide prevention here.

Meet our team

The NSPA is governed by a Steering Group which is elected by the NSPA membership. The Steering Group oversees the strategic direction of the Alliance and is led by two Co-Chairs. The overall work of the Alliance is supported by a Secretariat hosted by Samaritans.

You can find out more about the Steering Group and the Secretariat via their respective pages.