DeWine visits Dayton Children’s to unveil Ohio suicide prevention plan

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DAYTON, Ohio (WDTN) – Governor Mike DeWine joined state leaders Friday to unveil the first-ever, collaborative Suicide Prevention Plan for Ohio which will direct the state’s prevention efforts over the next three years.

He was joined at Dayton Children’s by Ohio Department of Mental Health and Addiction Services (OhioMHAS) Director Lori Criss and leadership from the Ohio Suicide Prevention Foundation.

“I can’t think of anything more gut-wrenching for a family than losing someone to suicide. In Ohio five people a day die by suicide, and a youth dies by suicide every 33 hours. These are sobering statistics and it will take all of us working together to make an impact and reduce the number of deaths by suicide across the state. One of the goals of my RecoveryOhio initiative is to address mental health and other issues that lead to death by suicide.  While the RecoveryOhio’s Initial Report offered preliminary recommendations that begin to address suicide, The Suicide Prevention Plan for Ohio that we are releasing today furthers the conversation. It is meant to guide discussions and strategies among advocates, health partners, and state agencies as we work to prevent suicide,” said Governor DeWine.

The plan was written by a group of 33 Ohioans from the public and private sectors who either have professional or personal experience with suicide.

The state plans to:

  • Raise awareness of the warning signs and risk factors of suicide.
  • Concentrate efforts on integrating suicide prevention practices into health care, public safety, and education services on the local and state levels.
  • Build suicide prevention capacity and infrastructure at the organizational, local, and state levels.
  • Focus prevention efforts on groups identified as having higher rates of suicide, including youths ages 10-24, males ages 25-59, and veterans and military members.
  • Standardize, gather, and utilize data to continuously inform and evaluate the state’s approach.

“The Suicide Prevention Plan for Ohio was created so that all communities can see their role in suicide prevention, while suggesting specific goals to give benchmarks to the community,” said Tony Coder, executive director of the Ohio Suicide Prevention Foundation. “The plan promotes local cooperation that focuses on preventing suicide.  As more partners collaborate, we work to break down the stigma that surrounds the subject of suicide.”

The Ohio Department of Health’s 2018 Ohio Suicide Demographics and Trends Report revealed that five Ohioans die by suicide every day and one youth dies by suicide every 33 hours.

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