By Submitted Story on September 28, 2020
As part of its continued effort to promote awareness and understanding and to reduce the stigma associated with suicide, the Dare County Department of Health & Human Services requested that the Dare County Board of Commissioners proclaim September 2020 as “Suicide Prevention Awareness Month.”
The proclamation presented at the Sept. 21 meeting stated that suicide is the 10th leading cause of death in the United States, the eighth leading cause of death among residents of Dare County and the second leading cause of death in individuals between the ages of 20 and 39, according to the 2019 Community Health Needs Assessment. Therefore, the proclamation continued, suicide is a “huge but largely preventable public health issue.”
Chairman Woodard went on to state that the number of deaths by suicide continues to increase in the United States, North Carolina and Dare County, and that “for every suicide death, there are numerous family and friends whose lives are devastated emotionally, socially and economically.”
Upon adopting the proclamation in support of the Dare County Department of Health and Human Services’ efforts to promote suicide awareness and prevention, the Dare County Board of Commissioners urged the county’s citizens and other interested groups to “promote awareness of this debilitating public health issue and reach out to someone with kind words of inspiration that may save a life.”
In 2016, the Healthy Carolinians of the Outer Banks formed the Breaking Through Task Force to address the stigma associated with suicide as well as the other barriers that prevent many people from seeking help for mental health or substance use issues.
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