Officials want Facebook and Google to use AI to help identify high-risk online users and protect young Brits from deadly content

Under radical plans, officials want digital tech to help identify those most likely to make an attempt on their own lives.

Jackie Doyle-Price, the first minister for suicide prevention, has pledged to slash self-inflicted death rates by ten per cent by 2020.

She wants to use artificial intelligence to pick up high risk individuals, so they can be offered help.

Ms Doyle-Price also says online giants to do more to block access to material that explains how to self-harm or commit suicide.

There are still 4,500 such deaths each year in England – around 13 every day.

Launching a cross-government workplan to reduce suicides, Ms Doyle-Price said: “As a society we need to do everything we can to support vulnerable and at-risk people, as well as those in crisis, and give them the help they desperately need.

I will be working with local councils, the NHS and the justice system to make sure suicide prevention plans are put in place across public services

Men are three times more likely to die by suicide and suicide it is the leading cause of death in blokes under 50.

Samaritans CEO Ruth Sutherland said: “We welcome the publication of the workplan and hope it will help save more lives.

“Every six seconds someone contacts Samaritans volunteers for support, so we know that there is a huge amount to be done to help those struggling to cope.

“When we can work in partnership, we can make a bigger impact in preventing suicide, particularly among the hardest to reach high-risk groups such as low income and middle-aged men, and those whose occupation puts them at higher risk.

“We also need more research into the increases in self-harm and suicide among young people, and why gambling addiction and debt can drive suicides. Improving suicide data is essential to help us put more effective suicide prevention in place.”


If you, or anyone you know, needs help dealing with mental health problems, the following organisations provide support:

  • CALM,, 0800 585 858
  • Heads Together,
  • Mind,, 0300 123 3393
  • Papyrus,, 0800 068 41 41
  • Samaritans,, 116 123

  • GOT a story? RING The Sun on 0207 782 4104 or WHATSAPP on 07423720250 or EMAIL [email protected]


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