Prevention in Practice: Upstream Suicide Prevention in Connecticut Elementary Schools
SPRC is pleased to announce the release of Prevention in Practice: Upstream Suicide Prevention in Connecticut Elementary Schools. In this five-minute audio story, Heather Spada from United Way of Connecticut describes her state’s effort to create and implement an upstream suicide prevention curriculum in elementary schools. Featuring Gizmo the therapy dog, Gizmo’s Pawesome Guide to Mental Health is helping school staff effectively teach children about mental health, life skills development, and social connectedness.
To read other success stories, visit our website, and look for more in the coming months!
Suicide Attempt Survivor Perspectives on Mental Health Care
Suicide attempt survivors can provide a valuable perspective on the factors that contribute to positive experiences with mental health care services. They can also offer important recommendations for system improvements.
Hom, M. A., Albury, E. A., Gomez, M. M., Christensen, K., Stanley, I. H., Stage, D.’R. L., & Joiner, T. E. (2019). Suicide attempt survivors’ experiences with mental health care services: A mixed methods study. Professional Psychology: Research and Practice. Advance online publication. doi.org/10.1037/pro0000265
Coworkers can play a key role in workplace suicide prevention. Experts recommend looking for signs of crisis in coworkers, such as feelings of hopelessness or being a burden to others. If you notice significant changes in a coworker’s mood or behavior, ask how they are doing and let them know you care. If they disclose thoughts of suicide, help connect them with resources, such as an employee assistance program or a crisis hotline. Avoid judging or gossiping about a coworker who is struggling. While you are not responsible for a coworker’s mental health, reaching out and staying connected can help them feel less alone. “The follow-up is very important,” said Christine Moutier, the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention’s chief medical officer. “It tells the person that you do care and that you’re not running away from the problem; that you can handle it; that you don’t judge them.”
State and Community News
A recent lawsuit is raising questions about colleges’ role in preventing suicide on campus. After Harvard University student Luke Tang attempted and later died by suicide, his father took legal action against the school and some of its employees for failing to prevent his son’s death. The lawsuit expands on a 2018 state supreme court ruling that schools have a “limited duty” to prevent suicide if they are aware a student is at risk. Tang’s death also highlights a need to address the unique challenges faced by Asian American students at Harvard and other competitive schools. According to national data, Asian students have the highest “unmet need” for mental health counseling among their peers. Experts are calling for more research on the particular needs of racial and ethnic groups and increased access to culturally competent mental health resources on campuses.
Public Health Advisor Positions at SAMHSA Suicide Prevention Branch
Two public health advisor positions with the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) have been posted to USAJOBS. The announcements for these positions (SAMHSA-CMHS-DE-20-10623514 and SAMHSA-CMHS-MP-20-10623515) are scheduled to close on Thursday, October 17, 2019.
Best and Promising Practices for the Implementation of Zero Suicide in Indian Country
Zero Suicide Institute (ZSI) at Education Development Center (EDC) has released Best and Promising Practices for the Implementation of Zero Suicide in Indian Country. This resource is a cultural adaptation of the Zero Suicide Toolkit for health systems serving Native American communities, and was funded by a grant from the Indian Health Service (IHS).
Resources for Student Engagement
Active Minds has released two new resources to engage students in efforts to address mental health on campus: (1) Recommendations to Shape a Positive Mental Health Climate on College Campuses with and through Peer-to-Peer Networks and (2) Mental Health Matters among High-Achievers.