National Suicide Prevention Week runs from January 31 to February 5, 2011 - THE MENTAL ILLNESS FOUNDATION AFFIRMS THAT "SUICIDE IS NOT AN OPTION"

MONTREAL, Jan. 25 /CNW Telbec/ - The Mental Illness Foundation is committed to supporting the efforts of the Association québécoise de prévention du suicide as part of the 21st National Suicide Prevention Week ( which runs from January 31 to February 5, 2011 and features the motto "Suicide is not an option."

"We remind all Quebecers that suicide is not a problem limited to a few, select individuals: rather, it is a societal problem that we cannot tacitly accept," declared Dr. Martin Tremblay, spokesperson and Chairman of the Board of the Mental Illness Foundation.

According to data published in 2008 by the National Public Health Institute of Quebec ("Institut national de santé publique du Québec"), there are 1,100 cases of suicides in Quebec each year, an average of three per day. The Mental Illness Foundation recommends people at risk phone the suicide hotline at 1-866-APPELLE (1-866-277-3553). The hotline is confidential, free and available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.

In addition to free public lectures, the Foundation offers a number of programs and services to raise awareness about mental illnesses and to inform the public of the importance of detecting depression, the main risk factor linked to suicide and other mental health issues. These include:

  • The Partners for Life program, a tour of secondary schools aimed at students in grades 9-11, their parents and other stakeholders;
  • The Nothing's Working program which consists of training courses for managers and conferences for employees to help them all better manage mental health problems in the workplace;
  • The Seniors in Mind program, a new program to be launched in spring of 2011 that will provide awareness sessions and training for seniors, caregivers, stakeholders and healthcare professionals. It will include a number of tools for information and prevention purposes.

"At the Mental Illness Foundation, we believe it is crucial to encourage people in distress to seek help and to support and empower the families of these individuals to contribute to prevention. This conviction guides us every day in all our activities," added Dr. Tremblay.

About the Mental Illness Foundation
Founded in 1980 by Dr. Yves Lamontagne, the Mental Illness Foundation's mission is to prevent mental illness in order to reduce the suffering of afflicted people and their loved ones by mobilizing individuals and society as a whole. For more information on the Foundation, mental illness and available resources, please visit the Foundation's website at

As part of the National Suicide Prevention Week, spokespersons for the Mental Illness Foundation are available to the media to discuss topics related to mental illness and suicide.


For further information:

Sophie Côté Laplante
Office: 514-843-2376
Cell: 514-220-1082

Ana Marinescu
Office: 514-843-2327
Cell: 514-501-0262

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