Mesa County Has High Suicide Rates
KREX News Room
GRAND JUNCTION, Colo. On Tuesday, officials at a youth suicide prevention symposium say Mesa County has one of the highest suicide rates in the state.
The Colorado Department of Education, Office of Suicide Prevention and Colorado School Safety Resource Center hosted a forum for teachers, counselors and mental psychologists about different prevention methods for suicide.
Officials also discussed how to approach students and family after a suicide.
The symposium was able to let education professionals walk away with many programs to use in their classrooms.
"A list of programs that school can implement with high risk students or with staff and faculty," Colorado Public Health and Environment Director Jarrod Hiendman.
The current program being used right now in schools is the Signs of Suicide program or “SOS.”
This program teaches kids and teachers how to recognize and intervene if someone has suicidal tendencies.
Heindman says this program is wide spread throughout the school and all of the students in one form or another is being introduced into this process.
Many educations professionals feel this type of actions is essential to help lessen the number of suicides or suicide attempts.
"Preventative measures with youth can greatly decrease the amount or the number of suicides in youth. If we put some best practices and preventative measures," said Danny Sandoval CMU Director of Advocacy and Health.
Sandoval plans on reevaluating some of programs and see what works in for their system.
Officials say as of 2012 the average suicide rate in Mesa County is at the highest quartile with 20.7 to 26.5 percentages.
Officials also say suicide is the leading cause of death in Colorado with an average state rate of 16.8 percent.