A memorandum of understanding was signed this morning between the Royal Gibraltar Police, the Gibraltar Fire and Rescue Services and the Gibsams charity for the purposes of suicide prevention.
The aim of this MoU is to establish a better collaborative working framework between the three organisations and to help reduce the number of suicides that take place in Gibraltar.
Gibsams provides a confidential helpline to individuals experiencing distress or suicidal thoughts, and this multi-agency initiative seeks to cement that approach on a purely anonymous basis, streamlining lines of communication to become more effective in suicide prevention situations.
The RGP will only be involved when there are objective reasons to believe that an individual is in immediate need of assistance and at risk of self-harm, and will assume responsibility for deploying safeguarding measures as necessary.
One of the main elements that the three organisation are keen to emphasize is the anonymity factor as personal details from individuals at risk will not be sought by emergency responders.
The MoU was signed by RGP Commissioner Ian McGrail, Chief Fire Officer Tony Yusifredo and Founder of Gibsams Marielou Guerrero.
The three signatories said that suicide prevention has sadly become an important issue in the community, and front line police officers need to be able to respond to these complex situations in a sensitive, fast and effective manner.
“We are all committed to tackling this worrying tendency that we have experienced in the past few years by providing a sympathetic hand to vulnerable people who need it in a moment of crisis. We are pooling our resources and knowledge with the aim of helping these individuals and saving lives,” they said.