|James Thomson, 20 took his life in his second year at|
Bristol University. SWNS
Jack Malvern, The Times, 22 June 2018
A spate of student suicides has been caused by a “cluster effect” rather than failings in pastoral care, an academic at Bristol University has said.
David Gunnell, professor of epidemiology at the university and a leading authority on suicide research, said that it was his instinct that the link between the ten deaths since October 2016 was the result of a phenomenon in which one death in a community can influence another.
Parents of students who killed themselves while studying at the university reacted to the suggestion with anger and distress. They argue that Bristol’s response to the deaths, including plans to spend £1 million on a programme to improve its provision of pastoral care, highlight current shortcomings.