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Advocate Says Coordinated Effort Needed to Address Suicide

Antigo, WI, United States /
Advocate Says Coordinated Effort Needed to Address Suicide

A Wisconsin advocate says that addressing rising suicide rates will require a coordinated effort. Recent numbers from the Centers for Disease Control show 49 states including Wisconsin saw an increase in suicide. Shel Gross is Director of Public Policy for Mental Health America of Wisconsin.

“Many people who are suicidal touch the health care system,” Gross said. “But many don’t. So other parts of the community need to educated and trained, to recognize and know what to do when someone they’re in contact with may be suicidal.”

Gross said unfortunately, most Wisconsin counties suffer from a shortage of mental health professionals. “Access to treatment is really problematic in most of the state.”

Gross said there’s still a good deal of stigma attached to suicide. “Part of the reason we have people acting ‘impulsively’ is they may be struggling, but they may not be comfortable letting people know that they’re struggling.”

  • File/Photo credit to Bob Hague, WRN

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