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    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:

    Suicide rates for black children twice that of white children, new data show Washington Post
    May 21, 2018
    A new study published in JAMA Pediatrics has found that, between 2001 and 2015,  the rate of suicide in black children (ages 5-12) in the US was higher than that of white children. This research confirms a pattern identified by the National Children’s Hospital in Ohio years ago. “We can’t assume any longer that suicide rates are uniformly higher in white individuals than black,” said Bridge, an epidemiologist who directs the Center for Suicide Prevention and Research at the Columbus hospital. “There is this age-related disparity, and now we have to understand the underlying reasons… most of the previous research has largely concerned white suicide. So we don’t even know if the same risk and protective factors apply to black youth.”

    Call for tougher suicide website action from internet providersBBC
    May 17, 2018
    Deanna Cruickshank, who lost her daughter Jo, 36, to suicide, is calling for UK internet providers to take action in blocking websites that give information about specific methods of suicide. “What struck me the most was how professionally produced these websites were, and how quickly they come up is obviously shocking. They are targeting vulnerable people, I am really shocked by some of them. These websites should be taken down,” said MSP Gillian Martin, who is backing Cruickshank’s request.

    Hospitals see growing numbers of kids and teens at risk for suicideNPR
    May 16, 2018
    The American Academy of Pediatrics Journal published new research that found the number of children ages 5-17 who visited children’s hospitals for suicide ideation or attempts doubled from 2008 to 2015. Older adolescents were found to have the greatest increase, and there was a seasonal trend to the increase in hospital visits. Through 2008 to 2015, visits spiked in the middle of Fall and Spring and fell in the Summer. “We knew there was an association with school seasons, but actually seeing that mapped out was surprising,” said lead author Gregory Plemmons, a pediatrician and researcher at Vanderbilt University in Nashville, Tenn. “The number one thing to take home is that it’s important to talk about this and important to ask about it.”

    ‘Nunavut is in crisis:’ Canadian Arctic communities plead for resources to deal with growing suicide and violenceNational Post
    May 14, 2018
    The community of Pangnirtung on the southeast coast of Baffin Island experienced 12 youth suicide attempts over two weeks in February, following a year with no suicides. In response, they sent a letter to the Nunavut government asking for additional resources. Health Minister Pat Angnakak said that several other hamlets have also reached out for help: “It’s not just Pangnirtung in a crisis. I think Nunavut is in a crisis.” Markus Wilcke, a Pangnirtung hamlet councillor, said, “We can create in the community more of a wrap-around service to the people. It is not just a couple individuals that will make the difference. It’s also the way they’re being integrated into our community services.”
    Find out more about suicide in Inuit communities in our special feature on the topic
    Related – Youth suicides, violence: Nunavut community of Pangnirtung calling out for help amid ‘sense of desperation’ CBC
    May 18, 2018

    10 people die by suicide from Toronto bridges every year, but city aims to prevent thatCBC
    May 14, 2018
    Toronto Public Health released a report requested two years ago by city council outlining the problem of suicide deaths from city bridges. From 2004 to 2015, there were 125 suicide deaths from Toronto bridges. The research also found that there was a 93% drop in suicides following implementation of bridge barriers or nets. Toronto’s transportation services department will now be reviewing the feasibility of implementing barriers at other bridge locations, after seeing success with a barrier on the Bloor Viaduct overpass.

    Ripples of positive change felt in North Battleford after ‘shell shock’ of suicide tragediesCBC
    May 14, 2018
    In January of this year, the small community of North Battleford, Saskatchewan experienced three youth suicides, with another two in the following months. After the first incidents, the community formed Better Together, a youth support group focusing on mental health. The group includes youth and faith groups, schools, sporting groups, and provincial ministries of social services and corrections and policing. “They really want to step up and help get the message out to each other and to the community about how important it is to take care of each other and to take care of themselves,” said school counsellor Melissa Fuhr. “So in spite of all the darkness and sadness there’s a lot of light.”

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