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– “Time to be rid of the draconian law”By Desilon DanielsNongovernmental organisations (NGOs) are welcoming the possible decriminalization of attempted suicides following the recent announcement by Minister of Public Security, Khemraj Ramjattan.Bibi Ahamad, Managing Director of The Caribbean VoiceEarlier this month, the minister indicated a possible shifting away from the age-old law which saw persons who attempted to take their one lives facing the brunt of the law.For many groups the news is a welcomed one. In fact,Cheap NHL Jerseys, some said, the potential shift is long overdue. One of these NGOs is The Caribbean Voice (TCV) which has been calling for the decriminalization of suicide for quite some time now.In an interview with Kaieteur News,Wholesale Hockey Jerseys China, Managing Director of TCV Bibi Ahamad expressed pleasure at Minister Ramjattan’s news.“We at Caribbean Voice are pleased and delighted by the news,” Ahamad said. She continued, “The thing about it is that when someone attempts suicide there is an issue in his or her life that led them to that decision.”It was emphasised that persons who attempt suicide do so for multiple reasons including domestic violence, abuse or rape.“So, when the law says that it’s a penalty,Wholesale Jerseys, there are so many more implications for the victim,” she said.According to the law, attempted suicide is an offence punishable under Cap. 8:01 section 96 of the Criminal Law (Offences) Act. The law states that “everyone who attempts to commit suicide shall be guilty of a misdemeanour and liable to imprisonment for two years”.For Ahamad, not only was the law “draconian,” but one which needed to leave the land. “Instead of persons who attempt suicide being punished by the law, there should be systems in place to help them,” she stressed.Some of these systems include adequate counselling and medical aid to identify the root driver for an attempted suicide.“People who survive suicide attempts need to be rehabilitated, not imprisoned,Cheap NFL Jerseys China,” Ramjattan said at the forum. “From a societal perspective, decriminalization is viewed a more sensitive and humane way of dealing with the problem as compared to prosecution.”The World Health Organisation (WHO) had found that in cases where doctors reach out and speak with patients who had attempted suicide, there was a decrease in repeated suicide attempts.“The criminalization of suicidal acts causes the problem of suicide to go underground, making it difficult for suicidal persons to receive necessary assistance. An individual who has attempted suicide and is open to receiving assistance is more likely to tell someone else or report an incident to,Cheap Adidas NHL Jerseys, for instance the Ministry of Social Protection, making him/herself available for the receipt of psychosocial support,” Ramjattan stressed.Therefore, Ramjattan recommended that Guyana should move towards the decriminalization of attempted suicide which would allow for suicidal persons to get help and realize their full potential rather than being placed behind bars. However, he said, decriminalization would not remove the driving factors for suicide and would therefore need to be coupled with a change in Guyana’s culture. He added that targeted programmes such as sensitization programmes on the indicators for a possible suicide attempt and the services available are necessary and will need to be developed. The main target, he said, will be groups identified as most at risk.The decriminalization of attempted suicide is not an unknown concept. The WHO indicated that 59 countries across the world have decriminalized the act. Attempted suicide has been decriminalized in the whole of Europe, North America, much of South America and few parts of Asia.Last year, the WHO declared Guyana as the country with the highest estimated suicide for 2012. According to the report Guyana suffers 44.2 suicides for 100,000 persons per year. This figure is almost double what it was 10 years ago.However, suicide attempts are seeing much bigger numbers.The Caribbean Voice has estimated that at least 25 percent of suicides go unreported. However,Cheap NFL Jerseys China, evidence reveals that unreported suicides are actually higher than 25 percent.
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