WP:MEDRS national and international expert bodies on suicide
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CountryOrganisationLinkYearDeprecates "committed suicide"?If not, advocates "died by suicide"?Wording?Notes
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Research
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Beaton, Forster & Maple
https://www.researchgate.net/publication/237011391_Suicide_and_Language_Why_we_shouldn't_use_the_'C'_word
2013"Suicide is not a sin and is no longer a crime, so we should stop saying that people 'commit' suicide."
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Carmichael & Whitley
https://journals.plos.org/plosone/article?id=10.1371/journal.pone.0216543
2019"A total of 63 articles were included in the study. We found that 100% of articles did not call it a ‘successful’ suicide, 96.8% did not use pejorative phrases and 71% did not say ‘commit’ suicide."
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Padmanathan et al.
https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6563960/
2019"“Attempted suicide”, “took their own life”, “died by suicide” and “ended their life” were however considered most acceptable. We argue that academic and media guidelines should promote use of these phrases."
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Richardson
https://www.cjc-online.ca/index.php/journal/article/viewFile/2902/2598
2015"The word [suicide] was not coined until the middle ofthe seventeenth century and did not become part of popular discourse until the eighteenth century... Pioneering suicidologist Edwin Shneidman (1985) suggests this difference in terms was subtle but significant—now one could “commit suicide,” "Etymology and usage
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International expert bodies on suicide re WP:MEDRS
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International Association for Suicide Prevention (IASP)
https://www.iasp.info/resources/Suicide_and_the_Media/2017Y"The phrase “committed suicide” implies criminality (suicide remains a criminal offence in some countries) and unnecessarily increases the stigma experienced by those who have lost a person to suicide. It is better to say “died by suicide” or “took his/her life”. "Links to World Health Organization
https://apps.who.int/iris/bitstream/handle/10665/258814/WHO-MSD-MER-17.5-eng.pdf
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n/aPan American Health Organization (PAHO)
https://www.paho.org/hq/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=15409:cambiando-la-cobertura-periodistica-del-suicidio-en-america-latina-y-el-caribe&Itemid=72543&lang=en
2019N, but ..."Avoid the use of stigmatizing language."
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n/aWorld Health Organization (WHO)
https://www.who.int/mental_health/prevention/suicide/resource_media.pdf
2008Y"The phrase “committed suicide” implies criminality (suicide remains a criminal offence in some countries) and unnecessarily increases the stigma experienced by those who have lost a person to suicide. It is better to say “died by suicide” or “took his/her life”. "
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National expert bodies on suicide re WP:MEDRS
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AustraliaLifeline
https://www.lifeline.org.au/about-lifeline/media-centre/guidelines-for-safely-speaking-about-suicide
?Y"[Avoid] Associating suicide with crime or sin"References the Mindframe and SPRC guidelines
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Canada
Canadian Association for Suicide Prevention (CASP)
https://www.suicideprevention.ca/Vocabulary
?Y"There is no clear cut right or wrong to the language you use when talking about suicide however ..."
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IrelandIrish Association of Suicidology (IAS)https://www.samaritans.org/documents/54/Samaritans_Media_Guidelines_Ireland.pdf2013Y"Phrases to avoid: Commit suicide"Produced in association with Samaritans in Ireland
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IrelandSamaritans in Irelandhttps://www.samaritans.org/documents/54/Samaritans_Media_Guidelines_Ireland.pdf2013Y"Phrases to avoid: Commit suicide"Produced in association with the IAS
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IrelandSuicide Irelandhttp://www.suicideireland.com/download/media-guidelines-for-the-portrayal-of-suicide/2016Y"Some time ago we were advised that many families of those who have taken their own lives find the term 'commit' suicide deeply offensive because of the suggestion that it is a crime."Cites Tara Mills of BBC News (Northern Ireland)
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UKSamaritanshttps://www.samaritans.org/documents/1/Samaritans_Media_Guidelines_UK_Apr17_Final_web.pdf2013Y"Check that inappropriate language has not been used, such as referring to a death as someone having ‘committed suicide’. Try an alternative such as ‘died by suicide’."
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USAAmerican Association of Suicidology (AAS)
https://suicidology.org/wp-content/uploads/2018/12/Suicide-Media-Reporting-Extended-4-merged-1.pdf
2018Y"commonly used phrases associated with suicide serve to criminalize or imply moral failings (i.e, “commit suicide”). ... Do not use the term “committed suicide.” The use of “committed” is no longer acceptable because ofmits strong association with moral failing or criminality"
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USA
American Foundation for Suicide Prevention (AFSP)
https://chapterland.org/wp-content/uploads/sites/13/2018/06/13763_TopTenNotes_Reporting_on_Suicide_Flyer_m1.pdf
2018Y"Do not use the word “committed”; instead, use “died by suicide” or “took his/her life” "Did not deprecate in 2016 but did by 2018
https://afsp.org/wp-content/uploads/2016/01/recommendations.pdf
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USANational Action Alliance for Suicide Prevention
http://suicidepreventionmessaging.org/safety/messaging-donts
2018Y"Terms such as “committed suicide” (associated with crimes), can reinforce stigmatizing attitudes about people who die by suicide."
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USAreportingonsuicide.org2015NY"Describe as “died by suicide” or “completed” or “killed him/herself.” "Credentials page ->
http://reportingonsuicide.org/about/
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USASuicide Prevention Lifeline
https://suicidepreventionlifeline.org/media-resources/
?NY"Describe as “died by suicide” or “completed” or “killed him/herself.” "References reportingonsuicide.org
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USASuicide Prevention Resource Center
http://www.sprc.org/resources-programs/recommendations-reporting-suicide
NY"Describe as “died by suicide” or “completed” or “killed him/herself.” "Links to reportingonsuicide.org
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National expert mental health bodies
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AustraliaBeyond Blue
https://www.beyondblue.org.au/media/mental-health-reporting-guidelines
2019Y"[Avoid] Associating suicide with crime or sin"Links to the Mindframe guidelines
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CanadaCanadian Mental Health Association (CMHA)
https://cmha.ca/camimh-calls-for-canadians-to-contribute-to-a-responsible-discussion-on-suicide-2
2013Y"There is no clear cut right or wrong to the language you use when talking about suicide however ..."Links to the CASP guidelines
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NigeriaMentally Aware Nigeria Initiative (MANI)
https://www.mentallyaware.org/media-resource-on-suicide/
2017NY"Describe as “died by suicide” or “completed” or “killed him/herself.” "Follows the reportingonsuicide.org guidelines
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USANational Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI)
https://www.nami.org/Blogs/NAMI-Blog/June-2018/Why-Suicide-Reporting-Guidelines-Matter
2018Y"Do not use the term “committed suicide.” "Links to reportingonsuicide.org
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Government bodies
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ArgentinaDefensoría del Público
https://defensadelpublico.gob.ar/wp-content/uploads/2017/06/Recomendations-for-reponsably-reporting-on-suicide.pdf
2017Y"Avoid saying that the person “has committed suicide” as its association with the expression “to commit a crime” gives it a criminal sense."State media watchdog: "Public Defender of Audiovisual Communication Services"
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CanadaPublic Health Agency of Canada
https://www.canada.ca/en/public-health/services/publications/healthy-living/language-matters-safe-communication-suicide-prevention.html#a3
2019Y"The term ‘committed’ is stigmatizing as it implies someone is criminal or immoral or has committed an offence. Suicide is not a crime. It was decriminalized in 1972."
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IrelandHealth Service Executive (HSE)https://www.samaritans.org/documents/54/Samaritans_Media_Guidelines_Ireland.pdf2013Y"Phrases to avoid: Commit suicide"Links to the Samaritans in Ireland/IAS guidelines
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NZMinistry of Healthhttps://www.health.govt.nz/your-health/conditions-and-treatments/mental-health/talking-about-suicide2019Y"this associates suicide with a crime or sin"Links to Mental Health Foundation of New Zealand
https://www.mentalhealth.org.nz/get-help/media/reporting-and-portrayal-of-suicide/
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UKCollege of Policing
https://www.app.college.police.uk/app-content/mental-health/suicide-and-bereavement-response/#finding-the-right-words-to-use
2016Y"Officers and staff should not refer to ‘committing suicide’ although this expression has remained in public usage long after suicide legally ceased to be considered a criminal act (1961)."
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UKWelsh Assembly
http://www.assembly.wales/laid%20documents/cr-ld11947/cr-ld11947-e.pdf
2018YThey refer media editors to the Samaritans guidelines
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USACenters for Disease Control (CDC)
https://www.cdc.gov/violenceprevention/pdf/suicideTechnicalPackage.pdf
2017NY"Describe as “died by suicide” or “completed” or “killed him/herself.” "Uses the reportingonsuicide guidelines, but links to e.g. WHO and AFSP
https://www.cdc.gov/violenceprevention/suicide/resources.html
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USADepartment of Veterans Affairs (VA)
https://www.mentalhealth.va.gov/suicide_prevention/docs/OMH-086-VA-OMHSP-Safe-Messaging-Factsheet-4-9-2019.pdf
2019Y"Avoid terms such as “commit suicide,” "
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USANational Institute of Mental Health
https://www.nimh.nih.gov/health/topics/suicide-prevention/index.shtml
?Y and NY"Describe as “died by suicide” or “completed” or “killed him/herself.” " ... "Terms such as “committed suicide” (associated with crimes), can reinforce stigmatizing attitudes about people who die by suicide."Cites both reportingonsuicide and the NAASP
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Media bodies
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AustraliaAustralian Press Councilhttps://www.presscouncil.org.au/uploads/52321/ufiles/SPECIFIC_STANDARDS_SUICIDE_-_July_2014.pdf2014Y"It may be preferable to use words such as “died by suicide” or “took his life” rather than a term such as “committed suicide” which can imply commission of a crime."
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AustraliaMindframe
https://mindframe.org.au/suicide/communicating-about-suicide/language
2019Y"[Avoid] Associating suicide with crime or sin"
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IrelandHeadline
https://headline.ie/suicide-self-harm/
2018Y"Avoid potentially harmful language: Commit suicide ..."
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UKNational Union of Journalists (NUJ)
https://www.nuj.org.uk/documents/nuj-guidelines-for-responsible-reporting-on-mental-health/
2014Y"Remember suicide is not a crime so it is inaccurate to use the word ‘committed’."
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USAInternational Center for Journalists (ICFJ)
https://ijnet.org/en/story/guidelines-reporting-about-suicide
2018Y"Avoid phrases like “commit suicide” "
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USANewsU / Poynter
https://www.poynter.org/reporting-editing/2018/best-practices-for-covering-suicide-responsibly/
2018Y"Avoid using "committed suicide" except in direct quotations from authorities."Cites both the AP and reportingonsuicide
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