I. Policy and Governance Advocacy

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1 I. Policy and Governance Advocacy Description These efforts include advocating for legislative or policy changes in government and institutions, with a goal of convincing as many systems as possible that they play key roles in contributing to suicide prevention. Advocate for: Partnerships between primary care and mental health professionals Partnerships with support organizations and service providers (e.g., churches, Employee Assistance Programs, schools, National Alliance on Mental Illness) to raise awareness and create a welcoming environment for those at risk of suicide Strong networks of support organizations and service groups Active participation across sectors, industries, and groups (e.g., education, healthcare, non-profit, forprofit, government) in implementing strategies Broad adoption of policies mandating cultural and linguistic competency Standardization of reporting requirements across sectors and agencies Possible certification of a countywide hotline with National Suicide Prevention Center s Lifeline

2 II. Community Education and Information Description These efforts include educational activities that: Increase awareness of mental health issues, including depression and suicide Increase the public s awareness of suicide Improve identification of those who are feeling suicidal Improve the public s knowledge of how to respond to a person who is feeling suicidal Increase awareness of how to engage with and access support services, grief counseling services, and postvention services Conduct a community-wide outreach campaign on suicide prevention and awareness Create culturally and linguistically appropriate outreach materials and programs that enhance helpseeking choices Conduct listening campaigns focusing on suicide prevention with small groups all over the County Educate systems with large populations on suicide prevention and response

3 III. Communication Practices Description These efforts include communication strategies that: Better educate the local media on the importance of responsible reporting about suicide Coordinate public news releases strategically to address periods when suicide risk is higher (e.g., holiday season) or to respond to suicide deaths, clusters, and suicide-homicide deaths Ensure the existence and maintenance of resource directories on local suicide prevention and crisis services in multiple languages Are linguistically and culturally appropriate Develop a Communication Plan appropriate for the diverse residents of our County Define one to three clear, concise, paradigm-shifting priority messages (e.g., MADD s friends don t let friends drive drunk ) Tailor the messages for different targeted populations Educate media and local reporters about safer protocols on reporting suicide attempts and deaths

4 IV. Data Collection and Monitoring Description These efforts, which will be defined and completed during the implementation phase, include: Identifying a Monitoring Team to oversee plan implementation Determining what additional data are needed to accurately monitor the number of lives lost to suicide Reviewing and interpreting data on lives lost to suicide Monitoring the plan s implementation to ensure that efforts continue across various systems as part of a countywide approach to reduce suicide Review all deaths by suicide to create psychological profiles of those at risk Learn from past suicides and suicide attempts to prevent similar situations in the future Conduct a comprehensive assessment of mental health services and standards in the County Identify leading causes of suicide in Santa Clara County Develop and maintain a current database of academic articles, data, and other resources on suicide

5 V. Intervention Strategies: Children and Youth (Ages 0 to 15) Children and youth experiencing: Academic difficulties, a change of schools, or life milestones Immigration or refugee concerns, acculturation stress, or linguistic and/or cultural differences Trauma (sexual, physical, emotional, or exposure to violence) Suicide of friends, suicide attempts, mental illness, or substance abuse Separation from family or homelessness Juvenile justice or foster care system involvement Gender identity issues (lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer, or questioning) Neglect and/or the lack of a nurturing adult Accessible mental health counselors in schools Screenings of youth for risk of suicide and other mental health concerns Targeted counseling for youth who have lost a loved one to suicide Enhanced mental health resources, school curriculum, and parent initiatives Identify coping mechanisms, access points, and connectors for youth to address life challenges Programs to protect youth from isolation and barriers and promote peer interaction Support programs that teach resiliency Programs and services that enable children and youth to cope with failure and disappointment, bullying, and breakups Training for those who interact with at-risk youth (community leaders, clinicians, physicians, family members, police, teachers, peers, and others) Accessible, youth-centered crisis line and a single, countywide access point/telephone number for youth at risk

6 V. Intervention Strategies: Youth and Young Adults (Ages 16 to 24) Young people experiencing: Suicide of friends, previous attempts, or thoughts of suicide Academic difficulties Immigration or refugee concerns, acculturation stress, or linguistic and/or cultural differences Trauma (sexual, physical, emotional, or exposure to violence) Mental illness, substance abuse, or cooccurring conditions Homelessness or alienation from family Juvenile/adult criminal justice involvement Foster care system involvement Gender identity issues (lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer, or questioning) Screening and timely intervention of those at risk of suicide School-based culturally relevant intervention services, including consultation for educators and parents, and peer to peer support Community-based, culturally relevant intervention services, including consultation for loved ones and peer-to-peer support Peer stipend program for youth to promote intervention and treatment services Training, support and educational materials for parents, partners, and family members and educators regarding safe handling of young adult life challenges and crises (e.g., educational suicide help hotline) Accessible and comfortable spaces for adults at risk of suicide, such as a mobile crisis unit, satellite self-help centers, and/or a lounge community space Age-appropriate crisis hotline

7 V. Intervention Strategies: Adults (Ages 25 to 59) Adults experiencing: Decreased functioning, isolation, disabilities, or poor health Trauma (sexual, physical, emotional, or exposure to violence) Suicide of friends or suicide attempts Mental illness, substance abuse, or cooccurring conditions Loss of income or loss of a loved one Criminal justice system involvement Homelessness Gender identity issues (lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer, or questioning) Screen and assess for risk of suicide Provide support to adults at risk of suicide Provide adults with tools to safely handle life challenges and manage crisis (e.g., cognitive behavioral theory and thought stopping) Provide accessible counseling and crisis services Create a mobile crisis unit Create self-help centers in communities Provide training, support and educational materials for friends, family members and employers regarding safe handling of personal challenges and crises (e.g., educational suicide help hotline) Provide accessible and comfortable spaces for adults at risk of suicide (e.g., a lounge in a community space)

8 V. Intervention Strategies: Adults Ages 60+ Older adults who are: Caucasian males or Asian females Over 75 years old Isolated or grieving ( widows/widowers), experiencing a loss in relationships, or experiencing another significant change Experiencing a loss of sustainable income and/or personal resources Functioning poorly or experiencing disabilities or poor health Experiencing immigration or refugee concerns, acculturation stress, or linguistic and/or cultural differences Coping with trauma (sexual, physical, emotional, exposure to violence, veteran) Mentally ill or abusing medication, drugs, or alcohol Provide education, informing materials, and consultation support to primary care providers Conduct depression screening, referral, linkage and follow-up services through primary care providers Provide accessible age-appropriate counseling and treatment services Provide an accessible, senior-centered crisis line and a single countywide access point/telephone number Provide home visitation follow-up services and link homebound seniors to services Develop senior-centered intervention (depression, death and dying issues) Provide training, support and educational materials for friends, family members and employers regarding safe handling of personal challenges and crises (e.g., educational suicide help hotline) Create accessible and comfortable spaces for adults at risk of suicide, such as a mobile crisis unit, satellite self-help centers, and/or a lounge community space

9 V. Intervention Strategies: Cross-Cutting (All Ages) People of all ages experiencing: Trauma (sexual, physical, emotional, or exposure to violence) Suicide of friends or suicide attempts Mental illness, substance abuse, or cooccurring conditions Juvenile/criminal justice system involvement Immigration or refugee concerns, acculturation stress, or linguistic and/or cultural differences Homelessness Significant loss of social and/or economic support Gender identity issues (lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer, or questioning) Provide screening and referral resources in primary care and other care-giving settings Provide training for professionals, service providers and community members on identification and response to at-risk individuals Create a crisis hotline and single countywide access point/telephone number Provide accessible, affordable, and appropriate crisis, counseling, and support services Create a mobile crisis unit Develop self-help centers in communities Offer consultation phone services

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