Identifying and responding to suicide clusters

This PHE document is for people with responsibility for suicide prevention in local authorities and their partner agencies.

The document includes:

  • the meaning of the term ‘suicide clusters’
  • identification of suicide clusters
  • suggestions for who may be at risk of suicidal acts due to the influence of other people’s suicidal behaviour,
  • the mechanisms involved in suicide clusters
  • the effects of suicide on other individuals

The steps required at local level to prepare for a suicide cluster are described alongside suggested responses to possible suicide clusters.

Identifying and responding to suicide clusters

Supporting online communities

In recognition of the increasing importance of online communities as spaces for peer and emotional support, we have developed guidance for online community moderators in responding to suicidal content.

Led by Mind in consultation with a huge range of stakeholders, the guidance enables any community moderator, regardless of forum or topic, to safely and confidently respond to people that may be expressing thoughts of suicide online and to signpost them to appropriate support.

Guidance for Online Community Moderators in Responding to Suicidal Content.








Providing support after suicide services: a suite of resources

Supporting people affected by suicide is an essential part of suicide prevention and to complement the guidance for local authorities in suicide prevention planning we worked with Public Health England and the Support After Suicide Partnership to develop a suite of resources for those developing services that provide support after a suicide.

The resources provide guidance on commissioning and delivering support after a suicide (otherwise known as postvention support), as part of a wider suicide prevention strategy. Step-by-step guidance on developing, delivering and evaluating a postvention support services, and a suggested pathway of support for people affected by suicide.

The resources are primarily aimed at local authorities and commissioners but can be used by anyone setting up and delivering services for those affected by suicide.

PHE’s Support after Suicide: A guide to providing local services Developing and Delivering Local Bereavement Services Evaluating Local Bereavement Services