SAMHSA is proud to announce a new online campaign to promote the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline, You Matter. The campaign focuses on the positive message that the lives of young adults matter, even as they face trying times or difficult problems.
Through a blog and social media, You Matter aims to build awareness and trust in the Lifeline among young adults by providing a safe, online space where they can connect with the Lifeline. The campaign showcases hopeful peer-to-peer messages and also supports friends of young adults who are in distress or crisis, providing them with resources to help. Ultimately, You Matter’s goal is to persuade young adults in emotional distress or suicidal crisis to contact the Lifeline for help by calling 1-800-273-TALK (8255) or chatting online.
You Matter includes a website with important information on Lifeline services, how to get help, and warning signs of emotional distress and suicide. The website includes a blog with posts about specific issues that many young adults deal with, such as losing a job or moving back home, and advice on how to deal with stress and life changes. The campaign already has an active presence on Facebook, Twitter, and Tumblr.
Suicide is one of the nation’s greatest public health problems – but it is also completely preventable. If all of us work together in an effort to reach out and help those at risk we can prevent the needless devastation suicide brings to individuals, loved ones and communities across the nation.
In order to provide practical help in this effort the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) has developed a new toolkit entitled Preventing Suicide: A Toolkit for High Schools. The toolkit aims at reducing the risk of suicide among high school students by providing research-based guidelines and resources to assist school administrators, principals, mental health professionals, health educators, guidance counselors, nurses, student services coordinators, teachers and others identify teenagers at risk and take appropriate measures to provide help.
The tool kit offers information on screening tools, warning signs and risk factors of suicide, statistics, and parent education materials.
Juvenile Justice Reform
- New juvenile court guidelines to help struggling students
The San Fernando Valley Sun:
Los Angeles' Juvenile Court Presiding Judge Michael Nash has issued new guidelines to eliminate fines and unnecessary court time for students who were late to school and for other minor offenses. The court will also direct students who miss school to seek out school- and community-based resources that are shown to improve academic achievement and get struggling students back on track.
- Report: Move mentally ill youth from state lockups CantonRep.com:
The state should transfer mentally ill juvenile inmates to psychiatric facilities as soon as possible and find money for their treatment, according to a new report on the status of Ohio’s youth prison system.
- Pennsylvania court amending waivers for juveniles
The Times Leader:
New statewide rules regarding legal representation of juveniles in court were sparked by the judicial scandals that first rocked Luzerne County three years ago.
- Despite weak economy, crime in Los Angeles County still declines
There have been dire warnings that crime would rise since the economy began stalling several years ago. But in Southern California, crime continues its long decline despite the weak economy. Indeed, 2011 brought new worries about a "double dip recession," yet streets in many parts of the region were the safest they've been in decades.
- New California bill goes after parents of truant teens
Inland Valley Daily Bulletin:
California Assembly Bill 177, which took effect on January 1st, expands the number of reasons for which parents or guardians can be ordered to take anti-gang parenting classes if their child is convicted of a crime.
- Board of Juvenile Justice retains ban on discrimination based on youths’ sexual orientation
Virginia’s Board of Juvenile Justice again has retained a ban on discrimination based on sexual orientation at its residential centers.
- Richmond Juvenile Detention Center has been placed on state probation
For the second time in three years, the Richmond Juvenile Detention Center has been placed on state probation because of ongoing safety concerns.
- New Illinois laws include shifts in juvenile sentencing process
A new state law requires that Illinois judges sentencing minors to state juvenile prison ensure that incarceration is the least restrictive option and that efforts to find alternatives to secure confinement were unsuccessful.
- Alabama’s Lauderdale County shutting down detention center
Weeks after the Justice Department announced its investigation into Lauderdale County's juvenile justice system, county officials are moving to shut down the youth detention facility a grand jury described as unfit to house dogs.
- After jail, youth with disabilities need special support to stay out
When young people with disabilities end up in the juvenile justice system, they're less likely to return to youth prisons after their sentence is up if they have jobs or go to school quickly after being released, a new paper says.
Adolescent Substance Abuse Treatment