Mayor Teri Johnston and Commissioner Mary Lou Hoover have proclaimed September 10th as World Suicide Prevention Day.
Commissioner Hoover has been a tireless advocate of raising awareness for years. She encouraged the community to join in the American Society for Suicide Prevention walk on November 19th. Already, a good number of staff have signed up to walk for the City of Key West team.
Suicide is the 8th leading cause of death Florida, she noted, and over 90 percent of people who die by suicide have a diagnosable and treatable mental health condition.
Suicide rates have increased 30 percent over the last two decades. According to the Centers for Disease Control, 3,135 people died by suicide in Florida in 2020. Organizations such as the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention are dedicated to saving lives and bringing hope to those affected by suicide through research, education, advocacy and resources.
“It is important to recognize suicide as a preventable public health problem,” reads the proclamation, “to address the disparity in access to mental health care for underserved and underrepresented groups, and to advocate for a comprehensive suicide, mental health, and substance use crisis response system to build on the historic new 988 phone number for the Suicide and Crisis Lifeline.”
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