Doctors, state lawmakers meet virtually to discuss suicide prevention, risk factors

Connecticut

(WTNH) — As the Legislative Session gets underway, a heavy issue is under consideration: suicide prevention. Lawmakers fear suicide could be another pandemic.

It’s already the third leading cause of death for young people but can be preventable. That was the message during a virtual suicide prevention summit on Friday. Doctors and state lawmakers met virtually to discuss risk factors like bullying and isolation.

Related: 2 Connecticut women look to help, inspire others facing mental health struggles

They considered so-called productive solutions like offering “trauma-informed” education in schools.

“If we have teb seats of youth in a classroom. Now these are Zoom seats for the moment for many young people in high schools, and middle schools, and colleges. For every ten seats, we have three individuals who are grappling with thoughts of death or suicide. We have at least one who has attempted,” Dr. Rosemarie Lillie Macias, University of New Haven.

“The pandemic has, as the doctor pointed out, has simply highlighted a problem in our community that has only been made worse by depression and isolation. This may be our moment to move forward with an assertive agenda to address these problems and to learn from what other states have done,” State Rep. Jonathan Steinberg (D-Westport).

If you or someone you know is struggling, there is help out there. Reach out to the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-8255. The lifeline is free, confidential and provides 24/7 support.

Crisis Text Line is free as well, providing 24/7 support. Text HOME to 741741 from anywhere in the USA to text with a trained Crisis Counselor.

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