Evaluation of suicide prevention activities

11.8 Potential consequences of not continuing the NSPP

Page last updated: January 2014

At the local level, cessation of the projects would be likely to be strongly felt by those who used the services (for example, those using counselling or support services). Several stakeholders felt that a key strength of the NSPP was the opportunity it provided to trial innovative responses for emerging risk groups and did not want this opportunity to be lost. Notable exceptions are those projects with a strong capacity building focus that developed community links and networks. For these projects the NSPP funding was used as 'seed funding', with the expectation that once established, the networks would be sustainable.

From a national perspective, it is difficult to comment on the potential consequences of not continuing the NSPP funding. The stakeholders interviewed were unanimously of the view that the Australian Government needs to retain a strong commitment and vision in relation to suicide prevention (including funding for suicide prevention activities). However, they did not see that the NSPP in its current form was integral to this vision. Those interviewed also reiterated the view that, given the multiplicity of activities and initiatives that exist within the suicide prevention space (see Section 11.2) and the lack of outcome data for the individual programs, it is unlikely that the cessation of the NSPP in its current form would lead to a measurable increase in rates of suicide or self-harm.