Hello Friends,

Every day we scan news headlines and social media for items of interest
to the field of suicide prevention. Here’s what we found last week: 

Experts stress importance of getting help as suicide numbers
Global Calgary
April 6, 2016
Mara Grunau is interviewed as part of this Global story about the rising number
of suspected suicide deaths in Calgary, especially within the past week.
Updated stats also show an increase in suicides for the first 10 months of

Attawapiskat declares state of emergency over spate of
suicide attempts
April 9, 2016
Attawapiskat First Nation, a Cree community located in Northern Ontario, saw 11
suicide attempts last Saturday alone, according to Chief Bruce Shisheesh. Only
about 2,000 people live in the community, which has continually experienced
high rates of suicide attempts.The community has only 4 health care workers
with no mental health training, so the community is asking the government for
further support. It was announced that the government will be sending in a
crisis team with mental health nurses as well as social workers.
Related – Attawapiskat First Nation declares state of emergency
April 10, 2016

Simultaneous cocaine, alcohol use linked to suicide risk
Science Daily
April 8, 2016
A study out of Brown University has found a
strong correlative link between cocaine and alcohol misuse and suicide risk.
The study looked at hundreds of ER visits throughout the US. Specifically, the
study saw that there was a strong suicide risk connection when an individual
misused both cocaine and alcohol, but much less of a connection when only one
substance was misused. 

Mississauga firefighters first in Ontario mental-health
April 8, 2016
The Road to Mental Readiness, a program used by the Calgary Police Service,
Canadian Armed Forces, and other first responder organizations, has officially
been implemented in Ontario with firefighters in Mississauga receiving their
first session of the training this past week. The training is meant to help
first responders cope with the trauma of their day to day work, which can often
lead to serious mental disorders such as PTSD.

‘We need to see miscarriage as an emotional emergency,’ says
April 7, 2016
After one woman fought for miscarriage to become a temporary disability, an
Ontario court has ruled in her favour, which could lead to a change in
disability law in Ontario. The woman was fired from her job due to the severe
depression and emotional distress she experienced after having a

Ontario passes legislation to give disability benefits to
first responders suffering from PTSD
National Post
April 5, 2016
The Ontario Government unanimously passed a bill that will allow first
responders who have PTSD to obtain disability benefits. Previous to this
legislation, responders were required to prove that their PTSD was related
directly to their work. 

Suicide risk can be intercepted in the emergency department
Science Daily 
April 5, 2016
A study done by UMass Medical School has found
universal suicide risk screening in the ER highly effective. Giving health-care
workers the ability to identify those at risk of suicide more accurately has
found suicide risk present in double the amount of patients than previously.
This means that suicide risk detection has increased from 2.9% to 5.7% over 5

Suicide of Calgary police officer puts focus on mental
health and stress
April 4, 2016
The Calgary Police Service lost a female member to suicide April 1. The CPS
have an exemplary peer support program, and have experienced only 4 suicides in
the past 25 years, but despite this, Nina Vaughan of CPS pointed out,
“(Police officers) come with all the frailties human beings come
with” and “we suffer stress in our family life and work life as every
citizen does.”

Inuit in Northern Quebec look to local solutions to tackle
April 4, 2016
Nunavik, located in northern Quebec, experiences high rates of suicides, and
now residents there are looking to take action. 5 youth died by suicide there
in just 4 months. Some community members are trained to teach the suicide prevention
program ASIST (Applied Suicide Intervention Skills Training), and they have
trained over 200 other community members. 

Canada’s head bureaucrat makes mental health in the
workplace a top priority
National Post
April 4, 2016
Michael Wernick, Privy Council Clerk, has mandated that all deputy ministers be
evaluated based on the mental health of their departments, making this the
second year in a row that mental health has been a priority. 

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