Mesa County suicide rate on the rise

By: Alex Hambrick Email
By: Alex Hambrick Email

GRAND JUNCTION, Colo. (KKCO) -- The Mesa County Coroner's Office released an annual report Wednesday identifying the suicide rate in Mesa County. In the last five years, suicide deaths have risen from 37 in 2008 to 47 in 2012.

Since 2008, the number of men dying from suicide is consistently higher than women; in 2012, 21 percent of suicides were women, and 79 percent were men.

According to the Coroner's Office, nearly six out of 10 people who died of suicide expressed suicidal thoughts or attempted suicide.

Karen Levad, Executive Director of the Suicide Prevention Foundation, said her goal is to surround the community with people who know how to intervene.

"I know the coroner said he has talked to so many people who have said they just didn't know what to say to that person. Well we've got training for that," said Levad.

QPR Suicide Prevention Training will be offered the second Tuesday of each month starting March 14. The class is at the Harris Office Suites at 619 Main Street. The class is free to the public.

Also in March, an applied suicide intervention skills training will be held over 2 days. It will provide practice in suicide intervention. The workshop runs March 28-29 and costs $75.

NAMI of Western Colorado is also hosting a community education class focusing on mental health as the first step to suicide prevention on March 16 at the Mesa County Health Department.

For more information, click the links below.

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