Dáil Éireann Written Answers 23/05/17 – Defence Forces – Suicide Rates

Aengus Ó Snodaigh (Dublin South Central, Sinn Fein)

To ask the Taoiseach and Minister for Defence the number of recorded suicides of personnel serving in the Army, Naval Service and Air Corps from 2010 to date, in tabular form. [24001/17]

Paul Kehoe (Wexford, Fine Gael)

I am advised by the military authorities that the Defence Forces Personnel Management System does not capture data on the number of suicides of serving members of the Defence Forces.

Therefore the Defence Forces are not in a position to provide the information requested in relation to death by suicide. All sudden deaths must be reported to the relevant Coroner’s Office. It is a matter for the Coroner to decide whether a post mortem should be conducted and to determine the cause of death.

Considering the ongoing mental health issues concerning both Air Corps workplace chemical exposures and Larium, for the Minister & Defence Forces to wash their hands of this is simply shocking.

Why are our Defence Forces not maintaining these statistics like their British counterparts?

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