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:

’13 Reasons Why’ to address suicide controversy with new warning videoBillboard
March 21, 2018
After commissioning a study by Northwestern University that looked at the impact of their series 13 Reasons Why, Netflix has released a warning video that will air before episodes of the series, as well as a resource website and discussion guide created with the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention.

‘Grief is a beast that moves through you’: Woman starts suicide support groupCBC
March 21, 2018
Trudy Gallagher lost her father to suicide last year and found that the response from friends and loved ones was sparse due to the stigma and lack of understanding of suicide as an issue. Realizing there were few support for survivors of suicide loss where she lived, Fredericton, New Brunswick, Gallagher started her own support group for those who have lost loved ones to suicide.

Shadows and promises in AttawapiskatCBC
March 19, 2018
The northern Ontario community of Attawapiskat is still struggling two years after declaring a state of emergency for their high number of youth suicides. The community was promised a youth centre where youth can go to be together and connect with Elders for cultural and wellness programming, but they’re still waiting. Many youth turn to drugs to entertain themselves in a community where there is little else to do. “With the [promise of the] youth centre, it made me happy the youth will have somewhere to do go, something to do other than drugs,” said Tyson Sutherland, 18. “I think it will have a positive effect here,” but for now, he says, “Doing drugs is mainly the one thing to do.” The parish hall has become a place where youth can go for a weekly arts night thanks to funding secured by a local couple. “They say, ‘Thank you, we appreciate it, we need a place to hang out,'” said Jackie Hookimaw-Witt, who runs the arts night with her husband, Norbert Witt.

Why aren’t psychologists taught how to prevent suicides?Scientific American
April 2018 Edition
A report from the American Association of Suicidology found that only 50% of psychology training programs teach psychology students how to spot warning signs for suicide and how to intervene.

Coroner orders review of Indigenous teen’s care at CHEO in days before her suicideOttawa Citizen
March 19, 2018
Amy Jane Owen, a 13-year-old Indigenous girl, was in the care of a group home when she died by suicide. Just days before her death, she was admitted to the Children’s Hospital of Eastern Ontario for suicidality and discharged four days later, though she had expressed a plan for her suicide and told staff that she had previously attempted. She was then re-admitted with self-harm wounds four days later, at which point she was discharged because it was concluded that she did not have any “active suicidal ideation.” Less than two weeks after her discharge, Owen died by suicide at the group home.

Edmonton photographer captures portraits of fellow mental illness survivorsCBC
March 19, 2018
Photographer Blake Loates was commissioned by Canadian Mental Health Association Edmonton to take portraits of people who had suffered from mental illness for a suicide prevention campaign. Loates put out a call on social media asking for volunteers and received an overwhelming response, but found she couldn’t say no to anyone, so she photographed all who responded, over 120 people.  “My future wasn’t looking very bright as a teen. I needed more hope than that,” Loates said. “That’s why I started speaking out, so I didn’t feel alone in my struggle and other people wouldn’t feel alone in their struggle.”

Mental health funding needed to prevent more deaths, say suicide survivorsCBC
March 19, 2018
Family members who have lost loved ones to suicide are speaking out in Nova Scotia about the need for increased funding for mental health services in the province.

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