Year: 2001 Source: Suicide and Life-Threatening Behavior, v.31, no.1, (Spring 2001), p. 71-82 SIEC No: 20010525

This research investigated the relationship of professional & personal factors to the ability of counselors to respond appropriately to suicidal verbalizations using the Suicide Intervention Response Inventory (SIRI). Level of training, experience with suicidal clients, & death acceptance were positively related to suicide intervention competencies. A personal history of suicidality & a belief that suicide is a personal right were negatively related to such skills. Regression analyses revealed that personal history of suicidality & attitude toward suicide as a personal right accounted for a modest, but significant, percentage of the variance in SIRI scores, beyond that accounted for by professional factors. Post hoc analysis indicated that the negative relationship beween personal history of suicidal behaviours & suicide counselling skills was significant in the professionally trained participants. These results highlight the importance of attitudes toward suicide & personal history of suicidality, as well as training & experience, in effectively counselling potentially suicidal clients. (37 refs.)