29 Jun 2012

Suicide victims may get consecrated ground

8:38 pm on 29 June 2012

An expert says Maori have changed their view of suicide and are now questioning where people, who have died from self-inflicted injuries, should be buried.

A joint inquest was held yesterday to determine whether the deaths of five young people in Kawerau, within a matter of months, were linked.

Child and Youth Mortality Review co-ordinator for the Lakes District Health Board, Dr Candy Cookson Cox, told the inquest there were similarities between the deaths but no direct link.

She also told the inquest that historically for Maori, there was a lot of shame attached to suicide and many of the dead were never buried in consecrated ground.

Dr Cookson Cox says through the years, Maori have changed their view because there are so many other acts against humanity that are far worse than taking one's own life.