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:

Lawyers more likely to experience mental health problems the more successful they are: studyGlobe and Mail
October 22, 2017
A study from the University of Toronto has found that successful lawyers are more likely to experience mental health struggles. Researchers found that lawyers working in large firms who have high salaries also had a higher risk of depressive symptoms. “People working in environments with more income on average actually tend to experience more depressive symptoms, and that’s because of their higher levels of stress exposure,” said study co-author Jonathan Koltai.

Family of Lionel Desmond wants answers from feds over veteran’s murder-suicideToronto Star
October 20, 2017
Lionel Desmond was a veteran of the Afghan war who suffered form PTSD and killed himself and his wife and daughter in 2015. Now, his family are on Parliament Hill to call for an inquiry into his death and why he did not receive more support in dealing with his PTSD. In response to the recently released joint suicide prevention strategy put out by National Defence and Veterans Affairs, Cassandra Desmond, Lionel’s sister, said “…until we actually start seeing the action go forth with this prevention plan, we are not going to believe that this is going to be the answer to anything.”

Suicide prevention comes out of the public safety shadowsIn Public Safety
October 20, 2017
Public Safety Agencies, such as law enforcement organizations, have “finally started addressing the issue of suicide among their ranks,” according to Dr. Chuck Russo, Program Director of Criminal Justice at American Military University. Russo remembers when he was working as a police officer in 1987, suicides were reported as being accidents, with causes of death stated as something like “died while cleaning service weapon.” Russo says that “As public safety professionals, we tend to do a really great job of helping and comforting others in times of need. Now we need to learn to take better care of ourselves and our coworkers.” He encourages organizations to promote mental fitness the same way they do with physical fitness, and increase access to mental health care and awareness of resources available.

The YA dystopia boom is over. It’s been replaced by stories of teen suicideVox
October 18, 2017
As classic dystopian future stories like 1984 rise on bestseller lists, young adult fiction is seeing less interest in narratives of this nature, like The Hunger Games, which were once big sellers, in favour of stories about teen suicide. “The YA dystopias of a few years ago came with a hero. They were cathartic and ultimately optimistic…” notes the author of this article, “That’s not the case with suicide stories. The suicide stories of today are about personal failures and self-destructions. And the destruction they describe is final. In the end, nothing seems to get better.”

Arcade Fire’s “Creature Comfort” censored for Canadian radio Pitchfork
October 17, 2017
Canadian band Arcade Fire’s recent single release Creature Comfort has been heavily censored due to its explicit reference to suicide and suicide methods. Global News first reported on the censorship, and the relationship between pop music and suicide.

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