Mental Health, Patriarchy and the Criminalisation of Attempted Suicide

SALC: According to the WHO, for every suicide in Africa, there are approximately 20 attempts. While some countries have slowly moved towards repealing the criminal offence of attempted suicide, recognising it as a public health issue rather than a criminal one, others have retained the offence and continue imprisoning people who attempt suicide.

These are essential statistics to ponder considering World Mental Health Day, celebrated on 10 October. The day offers stakeholders working on mental health issues a platform to discuss their work and what more must be done to make mental health care a reality for people worldwide.

Suicide is a global public health problem, and men are more likely to die by suicide than women in every country. The Review shows many reported suicides among men in almost all the countries where the studies were conducted. The Review notes, ‘When women show the strain of their stressful lives and are admitted to a hospital for psychiatric care, they are likely to be discharged much sooner than their male counterparts. They feel that they need to return to their jobs and families as quickly as possible, even if they are not ready.’

The Southern Africa Litigation Centre (SALC) will hold a webinar on 10 October to address the impact of the criminalisation of attempted suicide in Africa. Join the webinar, engage in the conversation and share your views on how Africans can address mental health.

Read full article: Mental Health, Patriarchy and the Criminalisation of Attempted Suicide

Photo by Nathan McDine on Unsplash

9 October, 2023
Type of Update:
Updates from our Partners
Courts Systems
Human Rights
Public Health
Campaign Partners:
Southern Africa Litigation Centre

The Campaign to Decriminalise Poverty and Status is a coalition of organisations from across the world that advocate for the repeal of laws that target people based on poverty, status or for their activism.


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