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World Suicide Prevention Day – September 10, 2016

Selkirk, Manitoba―The questions that arise after the tragedy of a suicide are many and the answers can be just as complex, perhaps not even answerable. Although suicide is preventable, the subject remains difficult to discuss.

Join us for Selkirk’s fifth annual World Suicide Prevention Day Walk to raise awareness and support those who are struggling. The walk, organized by community members, will be held on Saturday, September 10 at 1:00 p.m. at Gaynor Family Regional Library, 806 Manitoba Ave, Selkirk.

The Canadian Association for Suicide Prevention (CASP) estimates that approximately 11 people will end their lives by suicide today in Canada. Four out of five people who die by suicide have made at least one previous attempt. Males die by suicide more than three times as often as females, and three times more women than men attempt suicide, according to CASP.

“Talking about suicide does not cause someone to experience thoughts of suicide or increase the risk. Showing genuine concern by asking about suicide directly can be part of an immediate intervention,” according to CASP.

Suicide prevention relies heavily on the ability to recognize people who are in distress and may be at risk. The American Association of Suicidology developed the simple tool, “IS PATH WARM,” to remember the warning signs.

I               Ideation                               Talking about wanting to die; looking for ways to die.
S             Substance Abuse               Increased or excessive substance use (alcohol or drugs)        

P             Purposelessness               No reason for living; no sense of purpose in life
A             Anxiety                                 Anxiety, agitation; uncomfortable in own skin   
T             Trapped                                Feeling trapped - like there's no way out; resistance to help
H             Hopelessness                    Hopelessness about the future

W            Withdrawal                           Withdrawing from friends, family, and society
A             Anger                                    Uncontrolled anger; not being self; irritable; out of sorts
R             Recklessness                      Acting recklessly or engaging in risky activities, seemingly without                                                                                                              thinking, don’t seem to care if safe or get hurt
M            Mood Change                      Dramatic mood changes

Learn more about how to help by visiting http://www.reasontolive.ca/stories and view the video “Let’s Talk About Suicide.” For those struggling with suicidal thoughts, contact a primary health care provider, a mental health professional, call the Manitoba Suicide Line at 1-877-435-7170 or call the Interlake-Eastern Regional Health Authority’s 24 Hour Crisis Line at 1-866-427-8628.

Interlake Eastern Suicide Prevention Committee is made up of representatives from the Interlake-Eastern Regional Health Authority, community organizations, and community members.

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