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Buddy Up: Calgary Centre for Suicide Prevention campaign seeks to open the conversation surrounding men’s mental healthCalgary Journal
June 27, 2022
Throughout the month of June, men’s health month, Centre for Suicide Prevention (CSP) is promoting the Buddy Up campaign for men’s suicide prevention. CSP External Relations Director Akash Asif explains, “In Canada, men are dying by suicide at alarming numbers. There’s this expectation that you don’t need to have conversations and you’ll just persevere through every situation. Due to these expectations, men are often less likely than other groups to seek help if they are struggling.” Buddy Up Champion Brady Edwards says, “Suicide prevention is important to me because it is a way to literally save lives. There’s no reason to not talk about it. And if you don’t, it could cost someone their life.” Edwards explains the importance of continuing a conversation with someone you’re worried about, “Keep that conversation going. Don’t just accept ‘oh I’m fine’ and move on if you can see something that really appears wrong.”

Study reveals the job problems contributing to physician suicideScience Daily
June 29, 2022
1 in 15 physicians are experiencing suicidal ideation and research consistently shows that they are more likely than non-physicians to experience work-related stressors prior to a suicide. A new study explores what these work-related stressors are and has found 6 themes: “incapacity to work due to deterioration of physical health, substance use that was jeopardizing employment, the interaction between mental health and work-related issues, relationship conflicts affecting work, legal problems and increased financial stress.” To address workplace stress and poor self-care among physicians, study authors recommend broader structural and cultural changes. One author Kristen Kim, MD, a resident physician in psychiatry, said, “The unspoken culture of medicine encourages self-sacrifice, deferred needs and delayed rewards. We always want to put our patients first, but healers cannot optimally heal unless they themselves are first whole.”

Kenyan policeman’s suicide: A widow’s grief BBC
June 27, 2022
Jacob Masha, 32, a police officer in Kenya, died by suicide in January. His partner Immaculate Wiziri says that because he died by suicide, the Kenyan police force has not offered her any counselling or support of any kind. Earlier this year, the Kenyan police chief said that 2,000 officers out of 100,000 were unfit to serve because of their mental health. 57 officers died by suicide in 2021. Last year, the police set up a task force to improve officer mental health and has offered counselling sessions. Demas Kiprono, who has been researching police mental health at Amnesty Kenya says, “Policing is considered a very macho profession and expressing your feelings is considered a form of weakness.” Psychologist Rechael Mbugwa treats police officers in her practice and said, “For officers, seeking help is seen as a sign of weakness. They’re the ones people turn to for help so how can they now appear helpless?”

‘No one suspected he was suffering’: Powerful new campaign shares the last photos taken by people who took their own lives to show how people feeling suicidal hide their painDaily Mail
June 25, 2022
UK suicide prevention charity Campaign Against Living Miserably (CALM) has released a new campaign featuring the last photos taken by people who died by suicide. The campaign aims to demonstrate that it’s not always apparent who may be struggling with thoughts of suicide – the images often show smiling faces and no sign of distress. The photos are shared with more context and information about the person who died and their life. Simon Gunning, CEO of CALM, said, “People tend to think they already know what suicidal looks like – reclusiveness, crying, silence etc. and if they don’t see these traits in someone they’re worried about, they hesitate to intervene. In reality, suicidal behaviour takes many forms. People struggling can put on a mask concealing their inner turmoil before taking their own lives. CALM’s aim is to highlight this fact and equip people to take collective action. If we can all start one conversation with our friends and family about suicide, together we can smash the stigma that surrounds it… It might feel awkward to start with, but by starting a conversation today you really could help save a life.” New research conducted for CALM showed that 61% of people said they would struggle to know if someone they knew was suicidal.

Family of Vancouver police officer who died by suicide suing departmentGlobal News
June 24, 2022
Three years ago, Const. Nicole Chan of the Vancouver police died by suicide and now her family is suing the Vancouver Police Department. Chan was on the force for nine years and and died “two years after coming forward with accusations of inappropriate relationships with two senior officers.” One of the officers involved was dismissed while the other resigned. “She was just such a proud officer. She was proud of her and she was proud of being able to basically speak out for the victims,” Chan’s sister Jenn said in a 2019 interview. The suit claims that Chan’s employer “was made aware that Nicole suffered from severe mental distress triggered by intimate relationships.” Chan had struggled with her mental health and a previous suicide attempt in 2012.

American Academy of Pediatrics Advocates for Teen Suicide ScreeningWDEF
June 23, 2022
The American Academy of Pediatrics is now recommending that young people ages 12 and up be screened for suicide risk as part of regular preventative care. Timothy Fuller, Medical Director of Behavioral Health and Pediatrics for the American Academy of Pediatrics suggested to parents and caregivers, “One of the biggest things you can do… if you do have a child or teenager that has suicidality or that have depression with serious, significant suicide risk, is to just ask them how they’re doing every day.”

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