Suicide alert: Noble cause of taxi drivers

TAXI drivers across the country could do worse than follow the example of their Kilkenny colleagues in helping to combat the wave of suicide currently sweeping Ireland.

An inquest in Mallow into a shocking case of suicide heard yesterday how nine-year-old twins were stabbed over 40 times by their 21-year-old brother, who was suffering from a serious psychiatric illness, and then took his own life. His mother urged people with depression to seek help.

Aptly called ‘Taxi Watch’, the Kilkenny initiative keeps an alert eye on the city’s bridges and streets in the hope of spotting anyone thinking of taking their own lives and, talking them round with the aim of changing their mind.

Significantly, taxi drivers are trained by the HSE in recognising potential suicides and so far, 15 drivers trained in suicide alertness have helped 47 people since last November. For playing such a compassionate role within the community they depend on to make a living, the taxi drivers deserve to be applauded and their fundraising efforts to establish a dedicated drop-in centre ought to be generously supported.


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