September is National Suicide Prevention Month. During this month, individuals, organizations, allies and more will be drawing attention to the problem of deaths by suicide and advocating for prevention.
Suicide is a national health problem that currently ranks as the second leading cause of death for ages 10 to 34. On average, one person dies by suicide every two hours in California.
The impact of COVID-19 has had a significant impact throughout this community and left feelings of isolation, loneliness, economic impact and job joss and depression— all which greatly impact the mental health of people and thoughts leading to suicide.
At the height of the pandemic, the Center for Disease Control reported that one in four adults between the ages of 18 and 24 said that they have considered suicide because of the pandemic. In a CDC survey of more than 5,000 young adults, a surge of anxiety and substance abuse was noted in more than 40% who said they had experienced a mental health or behavioral health condition related to the pandemic.
All around the nation, suicide prevention organizations will be conducting prevention and awareness events. Listed below are several events taking place within Santa Barbara County:
– Saturday: Suicide Prevention Virtual Vigil sponsored by HopeNet Carpinteria. Log on at www.hopenetofcarp.org.
– Tuesday: Suicide Prevention Month Resolution (Board of Supervisors Hearing Room, Santa Barbara)
– Sept. 21: Free Webinar to learn more about the launch of 988. Sponsored by the Glendon Association. More info and registration, coming soon.
– Ongoing: Pacific Pride Foundation PROUD Youth Groups, PROUD Older Adult Group, Counseling. For information, call 805-963-3636, ext 103.
To learn more about the County of Santa Barbara Department of Behavioral Wellness, visit www.countyofsb.org/274/behavioral-wellness or our Suicide Awareness and Prevention webpage www.countyofsb.org/559/suicide-awareness-prevention.
For more information on the Glendon Association and suicide prevention, visit www.glendon.org/
The Behavioral Wellness toll free Crisis Response and Services Access Line is available 24/7 at 888-868-1649. The National Suicide Prevention Lifeline is 1-800-273-8255.