Are suicide survivors well served by the justice system as currently instituted?

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Conneely, Tony
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BA Counselling and Psychotherapy
Dublin Business School
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This study examines whether suicide survivors are well served by the justice system as currently instituted. While there has been a large amount of research done into why people commit suicide and the occupations most at risk from suicide, there would appear to be very little research done into suicide survivor wants and needs. A questionnaire was designed to explore the attitudes and feelings of suicide survivors towards the agencies of the Justice system whose function it is to enquire into incidences of suicide, namely the police and the coroner's office. Questionnaires were distributed to two suicide support groups each consisting of forty members and whose ages ranged from sixteen years to sixty-five years. Each group consisted of twenty-five females and fifteen males. Responses would suggest a very large dissatisfaction with procedures currently in operation by each agency. However, recommendations have been made in the past in relation to how each agency should perform their respective function but it is obvious that these guidelines are not being adhered to. This study will discuss what these guidelines are, together with the role of both the police and the coroner's office in the suicide enquiry.