Research

Research shows adolescents ‘still vulnerable’ to suicide

Research shows adolescents ‘still vulnerable’ to suicide

The research was carried out by the School of Sociology, Social Policy and Social Work

A report by Queen’s researchers, in conjunction with NSPCC, has warned that older teenagers in Northern Ireland are still vulnerable to suicide because of negative experiences in their childhood.

Dr John Devaney from Queen’s School of Sociology, Social Policy and Social Work led the research team, which compiled the Still Vulnerable report on behalf of the Commissioner for Children and Young People, Patricia Lewsley-Mooney.

The report contains recommendations designed to better support and protect young people at risk of suicide. It also outlines how exposure to problems in early childhood is linked to poor outcomes in later years, including suicide in adolescence.

Dr Devaney said: "We hope this research highlights the importance of seeing young people's presenting behaviour in the context of their lifelong experiences.

“Our findings highlight that too many young people have experienced multiple adversities, and that if professionals are to make a difference, it will require earlier, more sustained and better co-ordinated intervention for those young people.

“In our research we found many examples of professionals such as teachers, social workers and health workers engaging in work of the very highest standard with young people and their families.

“We hope that the recommendations from our study can ensure that politicians and policy makers support these professionals in what is often challenging but extremely important work."

 

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