Monday, October 8, 2018

Article: As suicide rates rise, Colorado is fighting to turn the tide

As suicide rates rise, Colorado is fighting to turn the tide
Suicide rates in America have rose by 28% between 2000 and 2015

October 5, 2018
By Edward Siddons

When the US unveiled the National Strategy for Suicide Prevention in 2012 it was fighting a rising tide. By 2015, suicide rates would rise by 28% compared to 2000, with rural areas most affected.

The National Strategy aimed to cut the suicide rate by one fifth by 2025, and recommended that states introduce action plans to curb the spread. Federal grants were announced, and every state appointed a suicide prevention coordinator.

But according to Jerry Reed, co-author of the National Strategy, progress has been sluggish: “At this point in time, there is no state in the US that has successfully implemented a comprehensive and integrated suicide prevention program.” If current trends continue, the US won’t simply fail to significantly reduce suicide, its suicide rate will be significantly higher than in 2012.

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But, at the foot of the Rocky Mountains, the tide could be about to turn. Colorado is set to launch a groundbreaking suicide prevention plan in the first six months of 2019. With high-profile national backing and a raft of financial support, the state’s plan could set the benchmark for the country to take to scale...