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Suicide Prevention: Make it a Priority Today and Every Day


Today, September 10, is the eleventh annual World Suicide Prevention Day.

Did you know:

  • Almost 1 million people worldwide die from suicide each year–the rough equivalent of one suicide every 40 seconds.
  • Suicide is second leading cause of death among people aged 15-44 years, and is one of the top three causes of death among people 15-44 years old.
  • Suicide rates are highest among persons 70-years old and above.
  • Globally, suicides account for 50% of all violent deaths in men and 71% of violent deaths in women.
  • For each adult who died of suicide there are more than 20 who attempted suicide.
  • Suicide is complex with psychological, social, biological, cultural and environmental factors involved.
  • Social isolation can increase the risk of suicide and, conversely, having strong human bonds can be protective against it.
  • Easy access to a means of suicide – such as pesticides or firearms – can mean the difference between life and death.
  • A prior suicide attempt is the most important risk factor for suicide.
  • Though there has been a trend toward decriminalization, in some counties suicide is still illegal, making it more difficult for those at risk to seek help.

A wealth of resources on preventing suicide can be found on the website of the International Association for Suicide Prevention. Of particular note for educators are the following reports, which focus on this year’s theme, “One World Connected:”

  • Connectedness & suicide prevention in college settings
  • Connectedness and Suicide Prevention in Adolescents: Pathways and Implications
  • Connectedness Is Key to Preventing Suicide Among Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender Youth
  • Fostering School Connectedness: Staff Development Program
  • Peer Involvement in Campus-Based Suicide Prevention: Key Considerations
  • School Connectedness – It matters to student health

These reports and many others can be found at

girl-kneesAdditionally, National Professional Resources carries a wide variety of resources for educators that can help with suicide prevention efforts, including quick-reference laminated guides, books, and videos on topics such as

Finally, in conjunction with Wold Suicide Prevention Day, the World Health Organization has just released the World Suicide Report, “Preventing Suicide: A Global Imperative.” It can be accessed at The report, which is available in multiple languages, provides a global knowledge base on suicide and suicide attempts as well as actionable steps for countries based on their current resources and context to move forward in suicide prevention.

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