suicide

Crisis Text & Talk Hotlines

  • 509-838-4428 to talk with “First Call for Help,” Frontier Behavioral Health's 24/7 crisis line.
  • 800-273-8255 to speak with National Suicide Prevention Lifeline 24/7. Press 1 for Veterans line.
  • 741741 Text HOME to text 24/7 with a crisis counselor from CrisisTextLine.org.
  • 202-304-1200 Text TREVOR, specializing in LGBT issues.

American Foundation for Suicide Prevention

SPR presents its annual public interest forum on March 22 from 6:30-8:30p.m. The topic of the forum is suicide awareness, a topic of relevance both in the Inland Northwest and nationwide.

Mental health and suicide affect all members of a community from family and friends to local schools. In Washington, one person dies by suicide every eight hours. It is the second leading cause of death for ages 10-34. Idaho ranks sixth in the nation in suicides per 100,000 people, well above the national average.

In 2014 and 2015, Washington's prison system experienced a spike in inmate suicides. During those two years 11 inmate deaths were ruled suicides, giving Washington one of the highest prison suicide rates in the country. Austin Jenkins has spent the past year investigating how this happened and how the prison system responded.

Jay Zimmerman got his first BB gun when he was 7, and his first shotgun when he was 10.

"Growing up in Appalachia, you look forward to getting your first firearm," he said, "probably more so than your first car."

His grandfather taught him to hunt squirrels and quail. Zimmerman, who lives in Elizabethton, Tenn., said pretty much everyone he knows has a gun. It's just part of the culture.

"When I went into the military, that culture was reinforced," he said. "Your weapon is almost another appendage. It's part of who you are."

A bill proposed in the Washington State senate would modify the state's Death with Dignity act.

The current law allows someone with a terminal illness to end their life. It was approved by voters in 2008. Among the requirements of the law, patients must be 18 or older, mentally competent, and certified by two physicians that they have less than six months to live. Patients also must be informed of all other options including palliative and hospice care.

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