Press Release
October 23, 2023

Senator Mark Villar Emphasizes the Need for Legislation on Youth Suicide Prevention and Intervention

Senator Mark Villar expresses his utmost concern with the recent cases of suicide among the younger population. According to the latest data from the Department of Education (DepEd), 404 students died by suicide during the academic year of 2021-2022 while 2,147 students are reported to have attempted to take their lives in the same time period.

"Nakakabahala po ang mga kaso ng suicide sa ating mga kabataan recently. The increasing number of suicide and suicide attempts among Filipino youth merits our intervention as we recognize that the challenges and mental health concerns of our youth brought about by the pandemic has been heightened by the rapid changes of the post-pandemic world to which they are expected to adapt," Senator Mark said.

In line with this, Senator Mark Villar filed Senate Bill No. 1669, or the Act to Provide Early Youth Suicide Intervention and Prevention Expansion in hopes to institutionalize suicide intervention throughout the whole country by formulating life planning education for Filipino youths. The bill aims to provide necessary training and awareness to concerned stakeholders within school premises. It will also enforce the employment of psychologists in every school to provide early intervention to the school youth.

"Kailangan po nating matutukan ang kalagayan ng mental health ng ating mga kabataan, lalo na ngayon na dumarami ang kaso ng mga estudyante who are committing suicide. Through this bill, we are going to provide our youth with the necessary intervening methods like counseling and mental health improvement sessions that will help them," Senator Mark added.

Senator Mark Villar emphasizes the urgent need to pass the bill as there has been a recent case of a 7th-grade high school student from Rizal Technological University who claimed his life by jumping off a school building. While the official cause of the incident remains concealed from the general public, this is the second case in recent years wherein a student from said university committed suicide, the other one being a college freshman who jumped from a mall's higher floor in 2016.

"Ako po ay lubos na nakikiramay sa pamilya at mga kaibigan ni Yuwan. His case touches my heart gravely as a father to my own child who is almost at the same age as him. Bilang senador, I am going to do my best to pass this youth suicide prevention bill so we can help our youth deal with their mental health concerns and prevent further cases of suicide that will claim more young lives," Senator Mark said.

Currently, the bill has been referred to the appropriate Senate committee and is just awaiting further legislative action.

News Latest News Feed