Thurs 23 February 2023, Translated from FaaSamoa. Three deaths in the past week are being treated at suicides by the Samoa Police including a boy from Savaii and two women, both mothers.
Deputy Police Commissioner Papalii Monalisa Tiai-Keti has once again raised the issue as a matter of urgency given Samoa’s latest case this week being an 11 year old boy.
Papalii conveyed the department’s condolences to the families and said the death of a young boy brings another level of seriousness to action that needs to be taken.
Papalii says the two women aged between 20-35 were both married and also both had children. The Deputy Commissioner added that relationship problems has been indicated as a contributing factor to the women taking their lives.
Papalii conveyed the Ministry’s condolences to the families affected, and added that they are working closely with the Coroner’s Court on all three cases from this past seven days.
It is not the first time Papalii has raised concerns by the Ministry of Police on Samoa’s suicide rate. Last year Papalii recognised the marked increase of cases between 2021 and 2022.
The Deputy Police Commissioner told local media last December that according to Police records, the number of suicides in Samoa had risen to 28 for 2022, compared to 19 recorded in 2021.
“That is an increase of close to 50%,” Papalii said at the time.
“You are not alone. Help is available. We urge members of the public to contact our NGOs with specialised services, where help is available,” urged Deputy Police Commissioner Papalii Monalisa Tiai-Keti.
A staff member of Faataua le Ola told Samoa Global News that an average of 3 to 4 calls are received by their office during the day. “A further 2 to three calls are taken by me after hours.”
The staff member says the free calling number is diverted to her mobile phone after hours and she hopes the network’s English speaking message doesn’t make callers hang up.
“I’ve tried to ask them [the network] to please remove the message or have the lady speak in Samoan but they said it can’t me done.”
According to Faataua le Ola, there are many people contemplating suicide who they are able to respond to each day and every week and their service also extends to offer support for families of those who have lost their lives.
The free calling number for Faataua le Ola is 800-5433.