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Board Resolution Declares September 2022 Suicide Prevention Month

The San Diego County Board of Education unanimously passed a resolution declaring September 2022 Suicide Prevention Month. Resolution 2022-16 reads:

WHEREAS youth suicide is the second leading cause of death for adolescents and young adults between the ages of 10 to 34; and

WHEREAS, on average, a young person dies by suicide every hour and 25 minutes in the U.S. (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 2015), and for every young person who dies by suicide, an estimated 100 to 200 youth make suicide attempts (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 2016); and

WHEREAS, youth suicide is a preventable public health problem, and educators and schools are key to prevention; and

WHEREAS, declaring September 2022 as Suicide Prevention Month will raise awareness that prevention is possible; treatment is effective; and people do recover; and

WHEREAS, in these challenging times, messages of hope and healing are needed more than ever; and WHEREAS, according to the California Department of Public Health, Office of Suicide Prevention:

  • Suicide rates of 10–18-year-olds increased in 2020 by 20%
  • Suicide rates of certain subgroups of youth (ages 10-24) have increased in 2020:
    • Youth who are Black experienced the largest increase in suicide rates by 28%
    • Hispanic youth increased by 2%
    • Overall, female youth suicide rates increased

WHEREAS, according to the California Healthy Kids Survey from 2019-2021:

  • 14% of 7th and 9th graders seriously considered attempting suicide in the past 12 months
  • 15% of 11th graders seriously considered attempting suicide in the past 12 months

WHEREAS, to promote student success inside and outside the classroom, we need to provide the tools and training to help school staff create a caring and supportive school environment, because early detection of student mental health issues by trusted adults and referrals for appropriate mental health care can save lives of students; and

WHEREAS SDCOE was selected by the California Department of Education to lead the effort to provide access to an online suicide prevention training for all California middle and high school staff and students with funding provided by Assembly Bill 1808; and

WHEREAS no single suicide prevention effort will be sufficient or appropriate for all populations or communities; mental health and wellness must be a top priority in our schools to increase awareness of mental health issues faced by our students and reduce the number of student suicides; and

WHEREAS September has been recognized as National Suicide Prevention Month, Sept. 4-10, 2022 is recognized across the United states as National Suicide Prevention Week and provides the opportunity to educate our community about warning signs and how best to help those in need, and Sept. 10 is World Suicide Prevention Day, which was first held in 2003 as an initiative of the International Association for Suicide Prevention and the World Health Organization.

THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED that the San Diego County Board of Education hereby declares September 2022 as Suicide Prevention Month and thereby requests that each school district, school, elected official, business, government agency, health care provider, organization, and citizen, recommit our community to increasing awareness, and understanding of suicide prevention.

triangle SDCOE emblem

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