Social media giant Facebook, on June 14, introduced new update tools and educational resources so as to help people who might be struggling with self-injury or experiencing suicidal thoughts.
The initiative, which was launched in India in collaboration with Deepika Padukone’s Live Love Laugh Foundation and AASRA, will reach out directly to those who are posting something suicidal.
The tool and resources will immediately alert Facebook when it feels a person posting something that causes concern about their well-being and send it to a team who would work round the clock so as to review the report. There will be many review teams all over the world screening these posts and they will then prioritize the most serious reports like self-injury and send help to those in distress.
These tools will also allow users to anonymously flag posts of their friends whom they fear are potentially suicidal and let Facebook reach out to that friend and offer help and support.
Facebook then will provide them with a helpline or support materials so as to guide them how to deal through their difficult time.
While Deepika’s ‘The Live Love Laugh Foundation’ is an NGO that deals with addressing issues related to mental health in India, AASRA is a charity organization that has been working with Facebook for many years and provides anonymous and confidential professional counselling to people in India.
Talking about Facebook’s initiative, actress Deepika Padukone said:
Meanwhile, AASRA Director Johnson Thomas too issued a statement:
Suicide is a huge problem in India. According to National Crime Records Bureau data, 1,31,666 people committed suicide in 2014.
The data also disclosed that 15 suicides took place in India every one hour on an average during that same year with metros Chennai, Bengaluru, Delhi and Mumbai together accounting for almost 37 per cent of the total suicides.