Commissioners issue proclamation for Suicide Prevention Day/Month
WAYNESBURG, PA – Suicide is a leading cause of death in the United States, and in Pennsylvania, one person dies by suicide every four hours, making it the second leading cause of death for people ages 15-34 and the fourth leading cause of death for people ages 35-54.
It has also been reported that nearly five million people in the United States have lost a loved one to suicide.
With these and other alarming statistics about suicide in mind, Greene County Commissioners issued a proclamation during their Sept. 4 meeting recognizing September as Suicide Prevention Month and also Sept. 10 as Suicide Prevention Day.
The proclamation was presented to Brean Fuller, Greene County Human Services’ Mental Health Director; Melanie Trauth, Caseworker; and Jodi Berry of Beacon Health Options.
According to Fuller, the goal of annual suicide prevention observances “is not to prevent suicide on a specific day, week or month, but rather to encourage wide participation in educational activities that draw attention to the problem of suicide and advocate for prevention efforts.”
Fuller provided statistics indicating that 2,023 suicides were reported in 2017, and during that same year more than six times as many people died by suicide in the state than in alcohol-related motor vehicle accidents.
All of these statistics, she said, “are not just numbers … they are mothers, fathers, brothers, sisters, family members, neighbors, loved ones and community leaders who have, for one reason or another, temporarily lost hope.”
“By working together this September, we can help prevent suicide,” she said.
Commissioner Blair Zimmerman agreed, adding that “each member of our community is valued and irreplaceable, and talking openly about stress and psychological health builds trust, reduces barriers to care and enables early intervention.”
Commissioner Dave Coder said local and statewide suicide prevention efforts “should be developed and encouraged to the maximum extent possible.”
Fuller thanked the Commissioners for the proclamation and for their support, and encouraged any and all residents wishing to obtain more information about suicide prevention to call the Greene County Human Services’ Mental Health Program at 724-852-5276.
In the photo:
Greene County Commissioners recently issued a proclamation recognizing Suicide Prevention Month and Day. Pictured (l. to r.): Commissioner Dave Coder; Brean Fuller, Director of the county's Mental Health Program; Commissioner Archie Trader; Melanie Trauth, Caseworker; Commissioner Blair Zimmerman; and Jodi Berry, Beacon Health Options.