Plan to fight suicides

A NEW proposal to stem the suicide rate in the Portuguese police force was presented last week, despite criticism from the police professionals association.

The document proposes the creation of a helpline for agents from the GNR and PSP to better identify stress situations that may lead to suicide attempts.

It also calls for better analysis of the psychological condition of candidates to the police force at the selection stage in future.

More inspections to control alcohol-related problems, depressive behaviour and stress situations as well as more psychological and psychiatric support to all agents is also proposed in the plan.

Since 1998, a total of 48 agents from both the PSP and GNR committed suicide and in the nine months of 2007 already six have killed themselves, the same number of total deaths registered in 2006.

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