By KRISTIN ROMAN / Editor
September is National Suicide Prevention Month and the importance behind this is monumental; last year, 42,773 people died across the nation from suicide. Florida’s statistics are alarming, especially when one learns that they ranked 28th among all other states in 2016.
According to the Florida Association of School Psychologists, suicide is the “third leading cause of death” among people between the ages of 10 to 24 with “road traffic accidents” coming in first within the state. An estimated 3,035 suicides in Florida in 2016; FASP also reported that “one person dies every three hours” from suicide.
To combat these statistics, organizations such as the Florida Suicide Prevention Coalition, continues to “increase awareness” through “legislative advocacy and statewide education.” The Statewide Office for Suicide Prevention and the Suicide Prevention Coordinating Council “focus on suicide prevention initiatives such as creating and implementing the Statewide Plan for Suicide Prevention.” The Plan’s goal is to “guide statewide efforts to decrease suicide related deaths” through efforts on both the state and local level.
Noles C.A.R.E. is Florida State’s very own prevention program. They offer “suicide prevention training, education, and resources.” The program focuses on a “step-by-step process that anyone can use when concerned about someone’s mental health;” by having Noles C.A.R.E. offer this type of education, they help open people’s eyes to the warning signs of suicide which could help save a life. Their name represents an acronym with each letter being a step in the process on how to talk to someone about their mental health. The overall steps include: 1. Communicate Concern 2. Ask Questions 3. Refer to Resources 4. Encourage Help-Seeking. To read about these steps in-depth, visit their how-to-help page.
By establishing these advocacy programs, the resources that could be crucial to saving someone’s life are now easier to find. As these organizations continue to plan events and spread their message of prevention, hopefully the number of suicides within the Sunshine State continue to fall. In 2014 Florida was ranked 23rd in suicides among the states; in just two years the state has moved down five spots. This shows positive signs from the state’s efforts to decrease suicides and save lives.
About Suicide Prevention Month:
University Counseling Center -> Appointments & Walk-Ins welcome
UCC After Hours Hotline 850-644-8255
Noles C.A.R.E. https://nolescare.fsu.edu/
National Suicide Prevention Lifeline 800-273-8255
Lifeline Crisis Chat www.crisischat.org
GLBT National Help Center Hotline 888-843-4564
GLBT National Help Center Youth Line 800-246-7743
Trevor Lifeline 866-488-7386
TrevorChat (3pm-9pm EST) http://www.thetrevorproject.org/pages/get-help-now
TrevorText Text “Trevor” to 1-202-304-1200 (messaging rates apply)
It Gets Better Project http://www.itgetsbetter.org/pages/about-it-gets-better-project/