The latest statistics compiled by the Center for Disease Control (CDC) in 2010 indicated New Jersey had the third lowest suicide rate in the country, but that doesn't mean suicide isn't a serious issue.
As we mark Suicide Prevention Awareness month in September, the experts are reminding all New Jersey residents they should speak up whenever a friend or loved one becomes severely depressed and makes even a passing reference to harming themselves.
No age is too early to start talking about mental health and substance abuse issues. A free Suicide Prevention Conference in New Brunswick on Sept. 12 will encourage taking a proactive approach with youth to help prevent such tragedies, instead of having discussions after such devastating incidents.
The National Defense Authorization Act of 2014, signed by President Barack Obama on Thursday, includes sweeping provisions dealing with sexual assaults in the military, paves the way for the eventual closure of Guantanamo Bay, and also contains a suicide prevention measure named after a New Jersey reservist.
In an effort to promote suicide prevention and encourage youth and young adults to communicate creatively about the difficult times they're experiencing, the University of Medicine and Dentistry's Traumatic Loss Coalitions for Youth and Young Adults Program (TLC) and the New Jersey Division of Child Behavioral Services have launched a peer-to-peer website, Jersey Voice.