East Hawaii News

UPDATE: Governor Lends Support to Suicide Prevention Week

September 11, 2013, 1:53 PM HST
* Updated September 12, 9:55 AM
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***Updated at 9:49 a.m. Thursday, Sept. 12.***

Gov. Neil Abercrombie will lend his support to suicide prevention awareness with the issuing of a proclamation Friday.

His office said today that state health officials and the Prevent Suicide Hawaii Task Force will join the governor for the signing of the proclamation naming Sept. 8-14 as “Suicide Prevention Week in Hawaii.” The ceremony will take place at 1 p.m. at his executive offices.

“Events such as these are known to save lives as they raise awareness and educate the public about the warning signs of suicide,” said Health Director Loretta Fuddy. “Suicide prevention week activities also send a strong message to survivors of suicide that community members care for and support them.”

 Posted at 1:53 p.m. Wednesday, Sept. 11:

This is National Suicide Prevention Week, which will be observed with a variety of activities on the Big Island.

They include a candlelight vigil, sign-waving, radio public service announcements and other awareness efforts.

Mayor Billy Kenoi has signed a proclamation recognizing the importance of Suicide Prevention Week, which runs from Sept. 8-14.

While the suicide rate in Hawaii is relatively low – it has the eighth-lowest rate in the nation – it is increasing and represents the single leading cause of fatal injuries in the state from 2007 to 2011.

According to the Hawaii Department of Health, suicide is the 11th leading cause of death in the US, but the third leading cause among 15- to 24-year-olds.

Approximately 900,000 Americans attempt suicide each year.

An estimated 4.6 million Americans are survivors of the suicide of a friend, family member or loved one.

On Friday, a candlelight vigil for suicide survivors will be held at 6 p.m. at the pavilion at the Old Kona Airport in Kailua-Kona.

The Prevent Suicide West Hawaii Task Force will be holding evening support groups for suicide survivors through November at the West Hawaii Community Health Center. Information from the group is available here.

For information on this week’s observances, contact Nancy Kern at the DOH’s Injury Prevention and Control Section at 808-733-9238 or [email protected]

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