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:

This hashtag is prompting men to get real about mental health and suicideMashable
August 28, 2016
#ItsOkayToTalk is a Twitter and Instagram campaign that calls on men, through the month of August, to use the hashtag alongside selfies giving the “okay” symbol. The goal of the campaign, started by Irish rugby player Luke Ambler, is meant to bring awareness to men’s mental health, and to make men feel comfortable talking to one another about their issues. 

‘Wolf Pack’ pushes men to have brave conversations about masculinityCBC
August 25, 2016
Next Gen Men is an organization that began as an after-school program for boys that works to “build better men” by encouraging them to talk about issues surrounding masculinity. The after-school program is now expanding to include a monthly group called ‘Wolf Pack,’ which takes place in cities across the country, including in Calgary, Alberta. Jake Stika, co-founder of Next Gen Men, says that "[We’re] trying to get men to talk about things that we don’t normally talk about,“ including body image issues, sex, dating, family, work and job loss. Wolf Pack is meant to facilitate conversations "with depth and substance.”

City hires street artists for mental health awareness muralsNew York Post 
August 25, 2016
New York City’s Health Department is using a grant of $500,000 to hire artists to create murals around the city, meant to bring awareness to mental health. “The Health Department is launching its first Mural Arts Project using art as a public-health approach to address mental and behavioral health issues through artistic collaboration,” said department spokeswoman Carolina Rodriguez. This project follows the same concept as the Porch Light Project in Philadelphia, which was found to have helped ease discrimination against individuals with mental health issues. 

Teen suicide attempts increase a ‘staggering’ 143 per centWindsor Star
August 22, 2016
Youth in Windsor-Essex County were seen the most in emergency rooms in the area for suicide attempts, according to epidemiologist Mackenzie Slifierz. 126 per 100,000 of youth were treated for self-harm injuries more than seniors (33 per 100,000) older adults (80.5) and younger adults (165). Bullying, cyberbullying, the experience of sexuality by LGBT teens and domestic violence are some of the potential reasons cited for these high attempt numbers. 

Taking it like a man is killing our menHuffington Post Blog
August 22, 2016
Movember founder Adam Garone talks about how men need to start talking about their feelings, and about how society needs to be more open to men being vulnerable and getting help when needed. Garone says, “This is the most significant health issue we (men) face and not taking action can lead you down a very dark path, with devastating results.”

Doctors’ Notes: Psychiatric demands outpacing supplyToronto Star
August 22, 2016
Dr. Paul Kurdyak from the University of Toronto, describes two trends that are causing a shortage of psychiatric resources in Canada: “Many psychiatrists working in underserved rural areas of the province are nearing retirement… replacing them will be difficult,” and “more women have entered the field of psychiatry… female psychiatrists see each of their patients more frequently… they tend to have smaller practices with fewer patients, on average.” Kurdyak suggests that other mental health professionals become integrated into the mental health system, as “We have a chance here to rethink the entire system. Instead of simply calling for more psychiatrists, we need to redefine the role of all psychiatrists so we can meaningfully improve equitable access to mental health care.”

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