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:
Female Veterans Quietly Struggle With Sexual Harassment, Suicide – VOA
December 9, 2018
Female veterans in the US have a much higher risk of suicide than female civilians. Women face many issues while serving in the military which can affect them after they leave. One of these issues is sexual harassment, both verbal and physical, in the workplace. “Traditionally, if you talked about being sexually assaulted or being sexually harassed, you were seen as a troublemaker,” said Toni Rico, a former Army media relations worker who accompanied combat missions and now works as director of communications and policy for Service Women’s Action Network. “You were kind of harassed and faced retaliation. … So there’s this culture within the military of silence, and if you want it to negatively affect your career.” Another cited issue is the lack of community and resources, as well as the fact that women who served in the military use more lethal means to die by suicide.
Q&A: Suicide survivor answers questions on life before and after her attempt – USA Today
December 6, 2018
As part of their continuing Surviving Suicide series, USA Today published an interview with suicide attempt survivors Shelby Rowe and Alia Dastagir. Questions included, “What advice would you give if someone told you they were suicidal?” Dastagir answered by saying, “Experts told us that if someone tells you they’re thinking about suicide, you should actively listen. Don’t act shocked. Don’t minimize their feelings. And don’t debate the value of life. You should try to focus on their reasons for living. A question you could ask: “What’s kept you safe up to this point?” … You don’t have to have all the answers…”
Suicide crisis in remote Indigenous communities ‘Australia’s shame’, Senate inquiry finds – Guardian
December 5, 2018
Australia’s Senate performed an inquiry into mental health in rural and remote areas and found that suicide has been in crisis levels in these communities for a long time. The inquiry also found that mental health services in these communities were lacking but that “in too many cases, the causes of suicide for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people is not mental illness, but despair caused by the history of dispossession combined with the social and economic conditions in which Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples live”.
Infections May Raise The Risk Of Mental Illness In Children – NPR
December 5, 2018
A new study published last week has found that infections are linked to a higher risk of mental illness in children and teens, and this includes common infections like bronchitis.
Mom who lost son to suicide says legislation that will let doctors warn families ‘makes all the difference’ – CBC
December 4, 2018
Bonnie Bricker lost son Reid Bricker to suicide in 2015, and now she’s commending the Manitoba government for introducing a bill that she believes could have prevented her son’s suicide. The new bill “allows medical professionals to contact a patient’s support network in situations where serious harm is likely to result otherwise.” This can be done with or without the patient’s permission. Bricker believes this would’ve made a difference for her son, who was released from hospital after a suicide attempt without loved ones knowing. “The doctor that saw Reid last on that evening let him go. Don’t you think he would have appreciated a chance to change that decision?” asked Bricker.
Suicides are on the rise. Here’s how schools can help – Education Week
December 4, 2018
The US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention released data to indicate that the suicide rate in that country is rising. This article asks, “What can schools do?” and suggests that schools create “a warm and welcoming environment, address bullying, and educate students and staff about depression and suicide.”