top of page

SUICIDE INTERVENTION POLICY

Research has identified that those who have been bereaved by suicide are at an increased risk of taking their own lives than those bereaved by other sudden deaths. Therefore, by definition, people who are bereaved by the suicide of a close friend, family member or partner have the potential to be vulnerable and at risk.  

 

Sunflowers Suicide Support have developed this Policy to ensure that we are providing the best possible Suicide Intervention and signposting to ensure that individuals at risk are kept safe and are able to access timely and adequate care. 

 

Requirements For Persons Involved in The Charity: 

As a Charity supporting an ‘at risk’ group it is important that all staff, trustees, volunteers, and subcontractors recognise and are aware of the vulnerability of our beneficiaries and are provided training to help them feel confident in responding to a person in suicide crisis.  

 

As a minimum, all staff, trustees, volunteers and subcontractors who are working directly with our beneficiaries must have: 

  • Discussed ‘well-being’ with a designated member of the Sunflowers team. 

  • Been provided a ‘signposting’ card, hope note and Helpers in the Community resource sheet, 

  • Have completed a safeTALK or ASIST workshop prior to supporting others.  

 

Sunflowers Intervention Procedure: 

Sunflowers follows the Applied Suicide Intervention Training Skills (ASIST) method, guidance and framework when communicating with individuals that require suicide intervention, or an individual concerned for the welfare of another individual.  

 

As part of the ASIST pathway to assisting life: 

  • The Sunflowers Team endeavour to explore and ask about any signs given out by an individual who may be struggling with their mental health or having thoughts of suicide.  

  • In doing this, they will try to ascertain as much information from the individual as possible. If via social media or telephone this includes establishing a name, location and who they are with at present. 

  • If they are deemed to be at immediate risk, or the individual expresses that they intend to imminently harm themselves, we will always activate ‘safety first’. 

 

 

Safety First: 

‘Safety First’ is paramount in any suicide intervention. If immediate or imminent harm or suicidal behaviour is expressed, Sunflowers will: 

 

Endeavour to determine as much information as possible about the individual, their name and location. This information will then be passed on as a referral to: 

  1. The emergency services (POLICE) by calling 999 

  1. Suicide Crisis Charity by calling 07975 974455 and ensuring a follow up email is sent to contact@suicidecrisis.co.uk  

 

The ‘safety first’ principle is always to ensure that the individual remains safe, prior to any further interventions.  

 

In a situation where ‘safety first’ is not required, we will follow the ASIST pathway.  

 

ASIST Pathway: 

  • We will ALWAYS make an individual and/or their family aware that we are NOT mental health professionals. Just a heart with ears. 

  • We endeavour to allow any individual having thoughts of suicide to talk to us and ensure that we are ready to listen, without judgement.  

  • We will use reflective listening to understand what they are trying to say. In doing so, we hope it enables both the individual and Sunflowers to establish a LIFE CONNECTION (something to live for.  

 

We are aware that we are not mental health professionals and believe that it is always best for us to signpost individuals to professional support when they are experiencing thoughts of suicide.  

 

  • In doing this, we will be familiar with and provide individuals with the details on our ‘Emergency Help in a Crisis’ card. 

  • We will, if deemed beneficial, provide a copy of our helpers in the community’ sheet. 

  • We will work with the individual to develop their safe plan, this may be contacting a family member, friend, or professional support with then to ensure that they agree to keeping ‘safe for now’. 

  • We will offer other methods of encouraging them to participate in self-care, including an invitation to our walking group. 

  • Once the ASIST Pathway and Framework have been worked through, we will ensure that individual can confirm their next actions and that they understand what we have discussed.  

  • All of us at Sunflowers value life and hope to give every individual the care and support to help them. 

 

Support After Intervention: 

As a Charity we recognise the impact that supporting someone through a crisis can have on our team. We have put in place a debrief procedure to ensure we document any intervention incidents. After an intervention the staff, trustee, volunteer or subcontractor should:  

  • Contact their line manager or supervisor to debrief.  

  • Complete an incident form detailing what happened and what the outcome was. 

  • Have the opportunity during a ‘group supervision session’ to talk about this ensuring the confidence of the individual is not disclosed. 

bottom of page