Part of Headline’s job is to promote responsible reporting of mental health and suicide. Why? So that no unintentional harm is done to vulnerable readers and audiences.
According to the World Health Organization, research over the last 30 years has convincingly demonstrated that the mass media are one of the most significant influences on belief systems. Consequently, people often form their attitudes about mental health difficulties and suicidal behaviour though the television programmes, radio programmes, news reports and films they see, read, and hear. The media has a crucial role to play in destigmatising mental health and shaping how we talk about it.
The media guidelines are there to support media professionals, who may be reporting on difficult situations, produce articles and programmes that responsibly contribute to mental health discourse. For any media working in this area please get in touch.
Headline is Ireland’s national programme for responsible reporting, and representation of mental illness and suicide. Our objective is to work as collaboratively as possible with Irish media professionals across print, broadcast, and online platforms to reduce the effects of suicide contagion, and the stigma attached to mental ill health.