COUNCIL bosses are hosting a virtual event to encourage people to speak out about their mental health in aid of World Suicide Prevention Day.

The national day which takes place today (September 10) encourages people to speak openly about their mental health and aims to break the taboo about speaking about the topic.

Barnsley Council has teamed up with experts to shed light on the topic.

Coun Jim Andrews, cabinet spokesperson for public health, said: "Suicide is not inevitable or unavoidable and the impact of this is complex, and the effects are profound; not only on the family and friends of the person who has died but also on the wider community.

“This is why we are committed to working with partners and commissioning services in the borough to provide support."

Julia Burrows, director of public health, added: "Locally, we have a well-established and evidence-based suicide plan in place.

“Still, we need to continue striving to be bold and innovative in our approaches to improving the population's mental health and well-being. As part of this work, Barnsley will be establishing a Zero Suicide Ambition.

“This is a bold ambition which will see us continuing to work with partners to create communities that can promote well-being and a greater awareness of mental health.”

A virtual event to mark the day will be hosted on the Barnsley Council social media pages at 11am.