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:

In suicide attempt calls, police can be difference between life and deathToronto Star
October 13, 2017
Police in the Greater Toronto Area respond to thousands of suicide attempt calls annually, but some believe they are not adequately prepared to deal with them. Jennifer Lavoie, associate professor at Wilfred Laurier University’s criminology department says that more training is necessary as “If (police) don’t know about other options that are available in the community, then the research tells us that the officer is more likely to arrest that person in order to control their behaviours,” she said. “There’s an aspect of criminalization that we need to be very careful of.” Many communities do have officers who are specially trained in mental health and know the community resources available to those struggling, but often the capacity for such training depends on funding. Inspector Bruce Townley oversees Durham’s mental health response unit: “It’s about providing the appropriate resources — and that includes funds — to have a better response model in how we’re going to help these folks.”

Transgender youth health study reveals ‘alarming’ statistics on mental healthCBC
October 11, 2017
The first-ever survey of trans youth in Canada has filled a significant “data gap” that prevented action on trans youth mental health. “People who resist LGBTQ issues, they keep saying, ‘Show us the evidence in Alberta,'” said Kris Wells, the lead Alberta researcher and director of the Institute for Sexual Minority Studies and Services at the University of Alberta. “Now the evidence is here, it’s compelling. And we need our leaders, our policy-makers, our legislators to take action to address these alarming statistics… because they’re not going to change on their own.” It’s also brought to light just how many trans youth are struggling; 65% of transgender youth in Alberta considered suicide.

Traumatic brain injury confirmed in young BC bull rider who took his own lifeCBC
October 10, 2017
Bull rider Ty Pozzobon, 25, died by suicide earlier this year, and it has been found that he was suffering from chronic traumatic encephalopathy (CTE) at that time. CTE is a disease linked to repetitive brain injury and is most often identified in football players who have suffered repetitive brain injury. Symptoms include memory loss, aggression, and depression. “Ty’s passing has brought so much sorrow and pain to all, we hope everyone, specifically athletes, understand that we need to educate each other with regards to head injuries, both short and long-term impacts,” said Pozzobon’s family.
Bull rider questions his own repeated head injuries after Ty Pozzobon’s deathCBC

‘I feel like I’m going crazy:’ Migrants in Greece are attempting suicide and suffering from other mental health issues at alarming ratesBusiness Insider 
October 10, 2017
Doctors Without Borders (MSF) have seen an increase in migrants and refugees in Greek camps who are attempting suicide and experiencing significant mental health issues. There are currently over 13,000 migrants and refugees in the camps, some of which are holding two to three times as many people as they were initially designed to hold. “Every day our teams treat patients who tell us that they would prefer to have died in their country than be trapped here,” said Jayne Grimes, manager of MSF’s mental health activities on the Greek island of Samos.

Japan determines Tokyo stadium worker was overworked before suicide CBC
October 10, 2017
Overwork is now recognized as being one factor in the suicide death of a young man, 23, who worked at Tokyo’s new Olympic stadium construction site. If a family believes one of their members has died by karoshi, or, “death by overwork,” they must appeal the government to judge whether or not this is the case. If it is, the family will receive compensation. Just last Friday, death by overwork was found to have contributed to the suicide of Matsuri Takahashi, 24.

Americans in rural areas more likely to die by suicideCenters for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)
October 5, 2017
New data released by the CDC in the US shows that between 2001 and 2015, rural counties have consistently higher suicide rates than metropolitan counties.

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