Family Services


It’s important to take all threats of suicide seriously and seek immediate treatment. The suicide rate for Inuit living in Northern Canada is significantly higher than the rest of Canada.

Some of the common warning signs for suicide include making suicidal statements, withdrawing from friends and families, neglecting personal appearance, or showing a change in personality.

Certain problems such as depression, substance abuse, being a victim of abuse, or the loss of a family member may increase the chances of suicidal thoughts in children and youth. Research indicates that an especially high-risk time for vulnerable youth is when they go back to school.

Treatment needs to be customized for the individual’s situation. The Department of Health and Social Services offers community, regional, and out-of-territory mental health services to help diagnose and treat people who are thinking of committing suicide.

If you are thinking of suicide, or if you think someone you know might feel like hurting themselves, contact your Community Social Services Worker or talk to a nurse or doctor at your local health centre.

You can also talk to someone else you trust such as a friend, family member, teacher or Elder. In an emergency, contact your local RCMP detachment.

You can call the Kamatsiaqtut Help Line for more support: (867) 979-3333 or toll free at 1-800-265-3333.

(References: and Ontario CMHA)


American Psychological Association – Suicide

Canadian Mental Health Association – Preventing Suicide

Centre for Addiction and Mental Health – When a Parent is Depressed, What Kids Want to Know

Centre for Addiction and Mental Health – When a Parent Dies by Suicide, What Kids Want to Know

Health and Social Services, Nunavut – Suicide – Coping with Grief and Loss

Kamatsiaqtut Help Line -- 867-979-3333 or toll free at 1-800-265-3333

Mind Your Mind -- A place for youth and emerging adults to access info, resources and tools during tough times.

Nunavut Suicide Prevention Strategy

Kids Help Phone 1-800-668-6868 – Suicide

Youth Suicide Prevention

Books in Your Community

For Adults

10 Steps for Parenting Your Grieving Children, Anne Hatcher Berenberg et al.

25 Things to Do When Grandpa Passes Away, Mom and Dad Get Divorced or the Dog Dies: Activities to Help Children Heal After a Loss or a Change, Laurie A. Kanyer.

But I Didn't Say Goodbye: Helping Children and Families After a Suicide, Barbara Rubel.

Navigating Teenage Depression: A Guide for Parents and Professionals, Gordon Parker and Kerrie Eyers.

Your Depression Map: Charting Your Own Course Back to Health, Randy Paterson.

For Children and Youth

A Terrible Thing Happened, Margaret Holmes.

After a Suicide: A Workbook for Grieving Kids, Dougy Center for Grieving Children.

Help Me Say Goodbye: Activities for Helping Cope When a Special Person Dies, Janis Silverman.

Hot Stuff to Help Kids Cheer Up, Jerry Wilde.

Sad Isn't Bad: A Good-Grief Guidebook for Kids Dealing With Loss, Michaelene Mundy.

When Something Terrible Happens: Children Can Learn to Cope With Grief, Marge Heegaard.