People desperate enough to try to kill themselves need help, not threats of criminal punishment. Until the law was repealed, suicide survivors in Singapore could be jailed for up to a year or fined, or both, although prosecution was rare. Photo: Shutterstock People desperate enough to try to kill themselves need help, not threats of criminal punishment. Until the law was repealed, suicide survivors in Singapore could be jailed for up to a year or fined, or both, although prosecution was rare. Photo: Shutterstock
People desperate enough to try to kill themselves need help, not threats of criminal punishment. Until the law was repealed, suicide survivors in Singapore could be jailed for up to a year or fined, or both, although prosecution was rare. Photo: Shutterstock
Paul Yip
Opinion

Opinion

Paul Yip and Yulin Cheng

Singapore finally recognises that people attempting suicide need mental health support, not punishment

  • Singapore’s move to decriminalise attempted suicide is welcome, as are moves to give police, doctors and courts new powers on treatment for mental illnesses, recognising that suicide prevention requires a whole-of-society approach

People desperate enough to try to kill themselves need help, not threats of criminal punishment. Until the law was repealed, suicide survivors in Singapore could be jailed for up to a year or fined, or both, although prosecution was rare. Photo: Shutterstock People desperate enough to try to kill themselves need help, not threats of criminal punishment. Until the law was repealed, suicide survivors in Singapore could be jailed for up to a year or fined, or both, although prosecution was rare. Photo: Shutterstock
People desperate enough to try to kill themselves need help, not threats of criminal punishment. Until the law was repealed, suicide survivors in Singapore could be jailed for up to a year or fined, or both, although prosecution was rare. Photo: Shutterstock
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Paul Yip

Paul Yip

Paul Yip is the founding director of the Centre for Suicide Research and Prevention at the University of Hong Kong, and a professor at the university's Department of Social Work and Social Administration. His interests include suicide prevention, population health and poverty research. He serves as the secretary general of the Asian Population Association and the research chair of the Family Planning Association of Hong Kong. He was a part-time member of the Central Policy Unit and a member of the Hong Kong government's Steering Committee on Population Policy.

Yulin Cheng

Yulin Cheng

Yulin Cheng is a doctoral student in the Department of Social Work and Social Administration at the University of Hong Kong.