September is Suicide Prevention Month
Every day approximately 125 Americans die by suicide and for every suicide death there is an estimated 25 suicide attempts. We can all help prevent suicide. Raising awareness, letting people know they are not alone, and encouraging people at risk to seek help is critical. Every year, mental health organizations and individuals across the U.S. and around the world raise awareness of suicide prevention during September, National Suicide Prevention Month.
This year, the National Suicide Prevention Hotline became the 988 Suicide & Crisis Lifeline. 988 is now active across the United States. This new, shorter phone number aims to make it easier for people to remember and access mental health crisis services. Please check out additional resources at the bottom of this message.
At S:US, we organized staff trainings in the practice of Applied Suicide Intervention Skills (ASIST) who will later participate in the SafeTALK T4T training this month. The training provides staff with the skills to recognize the cues, save a life, and help reduce personal and community stigma attached to suicide and thoughts of suicide. These staff will become certified instructors and will facilitate SafeTALK trainings organization-wide.
#BeThe1To is the 988 Suicide & Crisis Lifeline’s campaign to spread the word about actions we can all take to prevent suicide. These actions can promote healing, help, and give hope.
Be the one to ASK: Research shows people who are having thoughts of suicide feel relief when someone asks after them in a caring way. Findings suggest acknowledging and talking about suicide may reduce rather than increase suicidal ideation.
Be the one to BE THERE: Individuals are more likely to feel less depressed, less suicidal, less overwhelmed, and more hopeful by after speaking to someone who listens without judgment.
Be the one to KEEP THEM SAFE: A number of studies have indicated that when lethal means are made less available or less deadly, suicide rates by that method decline, and frequently suicide rates overall decline.
Be the one to HELP THEM STAY CONNECTED: Studies indicate that helping someone at risk create a network of resources and individuals for support and safety can help them take positive action and reduce feelings of hopelessness.
Be the one to FOLLOW UP: Studies have also shown that brief, low cost intervention and supportive, ongoing contact may be an important part of suicide prevention, especially for individuals after they have been discharged from hospitals or care services.
New Yorkers can also get help from the National Alliance on Mental Illness – New York City Metro. Their helpline, support groups, and classes are all available by phone and video.
One can access a mental health professional through their Employee Assistance Program (EAP).
Anyone can be struggling with suicide. Everyone plays a role in suicide prevention.