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More than 200 sailors moved off aircraft carrier after multiple suicidesCNN
May 5, 2022
Following three suicide deaths in less than one week last month on US Navy ship USS George Washington, the US Navy has moved more than 200 crew off the ship. There have been several suicides on the ship in the past year, and the US Navy is conducting an investigation into the command climate and culture. “The move plan will continue until all Sailors who wish to move off-ship have done so,”said a statement by commanding officer of the carrier Capt. Brent Gaut. They are also working to identify crew members who could “benefit from and desire the support services and Morale, Welfare, and Recreation (MWR) programs.” Admiral John Meier, commander of the US Naval Air Force Atlantic, said, “We’ve assigned an investigating officer to look into that and to really to look into the proximate cause. Was there an immediate trigger? Was there a linkage between those events? I expect that to report out this week.”

Ontario mom files complaint against doctor after adult son struggling with mental illness dies at home
May 5, 2022
Robert Martin, 26, died by suicide last month after years of struggling with mental illness. His mother, Leonie VanPuymbroeck, has filed complaints against some of his mental health workers. Martin was released from a 2-week involuntary hospital stay at the end of January and was found wandering the streets in a manic state. “He was already in the hospital safe,” VanPuymbroeck said “They could have kept him there until he was no longer manic. They could have found a therapist for him, listened to him, changed his psychiatrist when he asked for it. Maybe there could have been a different outcome. I don’t know that. But he could have at least been given a chance.” The Chatham-Kent Health Alliance has said that they will be conducting an internal review. Sonja Grbevski, chief executive officer for the CMHA’s Windsor-Essex County Branch said that it is difficult to keep people in hospital involuntarily: “That is probably one of the most difficult areas that we’re often faced with. The fact that when you have an adult child who’s not doing well, we can’t make them do anything different because people have to want to be helped, short of holding someone against their will and then, they have rights, even when you do hold the person against their will.”

45% of LGBTQ youth seriously considered suicide in the past year, Trevor Project survey findsCBS
May 4, 2022
A survey published last week by the Trevor Project, an LGBTQ mental health nonprofit in the US, found that 45% of LGBTQ young people seriously considered attempting suicide in 2021. “We must recognize that LGBTQ young people face stressors simply for being who they are that their peers never have to worry about,” CEO and executive director of the Trevor Project Amit Paley said in a statement. 53% of those who seriously considered suicide were transgender and nonbinary youth and 33% were cisgender. LGBTQ youth who were Native American, Black, Middle Eastern, or North African were more likely to consider and attempt suicide compared to their white peers. Respondents between the ages of 13 and 17 were more likely to consider and attempt than those who were in the 18-24 age bracket. The Trevor Project notes in their report that LGBTQ youth are not “inherently prone to suicide risk because of their sexual orientation or gender identity but rather placed at higher risk because of how they are mistreated and stigmatized in society.”

Mother of Miss USA Cheslie Kryst reveals pageant queen had attempted suicide beforeNBC News
May 4, 2022
**Method warning** Cheslie Kryst, 30, died by suicide on January 30. Kryst was the former Miss USA, and also worked as a TV host, model, and attorney. Kryst’s mother April Simpkins spoke about her daughter’s death on ‘Red Table Talk,’ a Facebook Watch show hosted by Jada Pinkett Smith along with her daughter Willow Smith and mother Adrienne Banfield-Norris. Kryst had struggled with depression for years. Simpkins says, “I knew Cheslie was suffering from depression. I didn’t know the severity of it.” Simpkins said that Kryst had attempted suicide before, “…It was after that first attempt that she and I grew very close. I wanted her to feel comfortable calling me. ‘If ever you’re in crisis, call me’… She began taking all the right steps. She began seeing a counselor. She was getting good sleep at night. She knew all the things to do.”

Why Can’t We Say ‘Suicide’? – Ignoring this illness is not sustainable MedPage Today
May 3, 2022
In this article, psychiatrist Arthur Lazarus discusses the stigma of suicide and our continued reluctance to even say the word “suicide.” Lazarus says, “Why are we afraid to say the word ‘suicide?’ Usually, it is for the benefit of the family, out of respect for their privacy. But the real reason is that mental disorders remain the most stigmatized of all illnesses, and suicide encapsulates mental aberrations to the extreme. I never considered my specialty (psychiatry) to have a mortality rate until one of my supervisors reminded me that our patients die by suicide and sometimes kill others by homicide, acts which can be prevented more often than not.” Lazarus says this stigma extends even to clinicians, who are reluctant to ask patients about suicide, often, he says, due to “anticipatory anxiety about learning that a patient is positive for suicide ideation.” Lazarus says, “It behooves clinicians to become comfortable asking ‘the question’ and to become aware of interventions for the prevention of suicide in their practice.”

Naomi Judd’s death and the unique mental health challenges older adults faceToday
May 2, 2022
Last week country music icon Naomi Judd, 76, died by suicide, bringing to light the issues of suicide and mental health in older adults. “It doesn’t get as much attention in the media, but the truth is that older adults have much higher rates of suicide compared with younger adults,” said Christine Yu Moutier, chief medical officer at the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention. According to Patrick J. Raue, a professor in the department of psychiatry and behavioural sciences at the University of Washington, older adults may be less able to engage in their former coping strategies like exercise or socializing. Raue says, “And COVID has made that even more pronounced. Social connections are important for all of us. But for an older adult who maybe is a bit isolated and has some issues with functioning or getting out of the house, that can hit those folks even harder.” Persistent low mood and loss of interest in things they once enjoyed are two warning signs to watch for that signal an older adult may be struggling with their mental health, according to Dr. Sue Varma, psychiatrist. Conversation starters and tips for speaking with older adults about suicide and mental health issues are included in this article.

Airdrie teen wants others to know they’re not alone in their mental health struggles and triumphsDiscover Airdrie
May 1, 2022
Lukas Bender, 15, is raising awareness for suicide among youth, after struggling with mental health issues and thoughts of suicide himself. Of his own struggles with suicide ideation, Bender says, “I was at a point where I didn’t really like talking about my feelings. I liked to keep them to myself because I didn’t know what people would think about them.” Bender now sees a psychologist and engages in activities like playing the piano to cope with his mental health issues. Bender’s mother Chelsea Hill says, “If Airdrie Mental Health [Airdrie Addiction & Mental Health Clinic] is really the only affordable option because the going price for a psychologist for one hour is $200, can every family that’s dealing with this, afford that? We need more resources, even if it’s psychologists coming forward and donating their time or offering free counseling twice a week at the Boys and Girls Club or something like that.”

Student talks in the open to remove mental health stigma
The Weal
April 26, 2022
Kaylee Nishizawa, UBC student and entrepreneur, lost brother Liam Nishizawa, 15, to suicide in 2019. Nishizawa describes her experience of grief and depression following the loss of her brother, “If I even thought of Liam, if I thought of anything, I would just go into turmoil…” Speaking of her return home following her brother’s death Nishizawa says, “I couldn’t even step into the driveway. I couldn’t get out of the car. I couldn’t step foot into (the) dark house where my brother passed away.” Nishizawa has been able to cope with her grief through her work as an esthetician, “Salon time is therapy time.” She’s also found healing in her newfound role as a mental health advocate, “Each of these times I (speak publicly about mental health), it shows me the strength I have, the courage I have, and the ability I have.”

Women Who Live with Gun Owners More Likely to Take Their Own LifeMedPage Today
April 29, 2022
A recent study has found that women who live in homes with firearms are 40% more likely to die by suicide than those who do not. “Most of the people who get guns, the great majority, are doing it because they want to protect, not imperil, the people in their home,” said study author Matthew Miller. “And we know from this work and other studies, that bringing the gun into the home is in fact doing just the opposite of what is intended.”

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