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Kitikmeot tour a success for men’s suicide-prevention programNunatsiaq News
February 24, 2023
Atii Angutiit is a men’s suicide prevention program in Nunavut. The program recently toured communities in the territory, and are already being asked to come back, Sam Tutanuak, senior adviser with Nunavut’s Department of Health says, “They loved it… They were in full support of what we are doing.” Through activities like qamutiik-building and musical performances, the program aims provide opportunities for men to connect with each other to help prevent suicide. Tutanuak points out that men have difficulty discussing their emotions, and allowing them to talk while doing traditional activities can help them open up. The program also staffs psychologists who are available to support. Atii Angutiit has had difficulty expanding throughout the entire territory of Nunavut, due to harsh weather making travel difficult.

Prolonged grief disorder linked to psychiatric disorders, suicide ideation among veteransHealio
February 24, 2023
New research has found that veterans experiencing prolonged grief disorder are significantly more likely to report having suicidal thoughts and attempts. “Military veterans represent a population at heightened risk for prolonged grief disorder, given their exposure to excessive deaths due to advanced age, combat deployments and high prevalence of suicide. To date, however, no known population-based study has examined the prevalence and factors associated with prolonged grief disorder in U.S. veterans,” said Peter J. Na, one of the study’s authors.

Women who suffer domestic abuse three times as likely to attempt suicideGuardian
February 22, 2023
New research has found that women who experience domestic abuse three times more likely to attempt suicide than their peers who don’t experience abuse. It was also found that those who experienced sexual abuse has an attempt rate seven times higher than those who women who hadn’t. UK adult mental health charity Agenda Alliance released a brief on the research, noting, “While this briefing does not establish a causal relationship between IPV (intimate partner violence) and suicidality, it demonstrates that experiencing IPV can act as a precursor to suicidality… It is concerning that some who die by suicide may be ‘hidden victims’ of domestic abuse, left uncounted and unrecognised.”

How Districts Can Respond to a Student’s SuicideEducation Week
February 22, 2023
This article explores how American school districts might effectively respond to the suicide of a student, following heavy criticism of a school district’s response to the suicide death of student Adriana Kuch, who was being bullied at school. Response suggestions include, “Don’t glamorize or fixate on how the student died; Validate feelings and give kids time to grieve; Don’t try to ‘fix it’ too quickly (by providing new training/awareness initiatives immediately following a death); Avoid emotional events and memorials at school; Maintain routines; Have policies in place and staff trained in advance.” Of allowing students and faculty time to grieve, Alexandra Karydi, director of Suicide Prevention Resource Center’s States and Communities Initiative, says, “You have to give people space to grieve, and you can’t shut them down with toxic positivity like, ‘It’s going to be OK.’ Feeling sad after somebody dies is really normal, and you don’t need to squash that right away. In fact, people who have time to heal and feel their community helping them heal, heal better.”

He saved a man from a suicide attempt. Then the police response left him baffled – Toronto Star
February 21, 2023
**Method warning** Thomas Lukaszuk, who served as deputy premier and cabinet minister in Alberta’s Progressive Conservative government, is concerned about police response in crisis situations after seeing first-hand how a suicide attempt he was intervening in was responded to. “I reflected on it, and I thought, first of all, you would think that they would want to approach me and that contractor and ask what happened,” said Lukaszuk. “Second of all, you would think that they would ask me, ‘Are you OK?’… Emotionally, this was a very traumatic incident.” Tom Engel, chair of the Criminal Trial Lawyers’ Association’s policing committee, said the absence of a PACT (Police and Crisis Response) team during this incident needed to be questioned, however, Edmonton Police Services said, “PACT is contacted in a situation where there is a significant mental health concern and/or indication of potential suicide or self-harm — not in an emergency situation where a suicide attempt is actively in progress.”

Teens Are Struggling Right Now. What Can Parents Do?New York Times
February 20, 2023
According to the latest Centers for Disease Control and Prevention data from the US, 42% of US high school students in the US experienced persistent feelings of sadness or hopelessness in 2021, and 22% had seriously considered suicide. “I am deeply concerned about the suffering teens experienced during the pandemic and the current crisis in adolescent mental health,” says psychologist Lisa Damour. “Too often, ‘mental health’ is equated with feeling good, happy, calm or relaxed. (But it’s) about having feelings that fit the moment — even if those feelings are unwanted or painful — and managing them in effective ways.” Damour goes on to provide tips on how parents can support teens, including by asking about how they’re feeling, meeting them with an empathic response, and allowing them to initiate conversations.

Students speak out about bullying after fellow student dies by suicide – ABC News
February 17, 2023
Students, former students, and parents of students from the New Jersey high school attended by Adriana Kuch, who died by suicide and was experiencing bullying, are sharing their concerns about bullying following her death. “We’re scared to walk in the hallways of Central,” Emma Smith, a 9th grade student, told school board members. “We’re terrified we’re going to get picked on and bullied and jumped.” One parent said at a meeting of board members, “My daughter has anxiety because of this place. She has been self-harming.” Adriana’s best friend said Adriana had submitted “numerous reports about how she was being bullied” and no action was taken. The issue of bullying as an issue in the US is also addressed in this article. Rachel Simmons, educator and author of a book about bullying, said, “Bullying is one of the greatest dangers that kids face when they walk into a school… It prevents them from learning and feeling safe.”

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