Inhabitants, Town Businesses Rally Close to Suicide Prevention

September is National Suicide Avoidance Thirty day period and Newtown officers and volunteers are in the planning stages of an ongoing initiative to elevate recognition and inform our group of suicide avoidance sources accessible. Countrywide Suicide Avoidance Month is a time when individuals, survivors, regional citizen corporations, mental wellbeing advocates, and governing administration businesses across the nation boost their collective initiatives to lessen suicide.

According to Selectman Maureen Crick Owen, who is aiding arrange the local energy, “The town’s aim is to be certain that our residents of all ages have entry to the assets they have to have to direct effective balanced lives. This is particularly crucial all through this pandemic.”

Crick Owen was brief to relate a number of sobering details that hit near to house. Just this year in Connecticut by itself, on ordinary, a person human being died by suicide every 21 hours, and suicide continues to be the next primary lead to of death for ages 10-34.

Moreover, she reported, more than a few occasions as several folks died by suicide in Connecticut in 2018 than in liquor-linked motor automobile incidents.

For Crick Owen and fellow volunteer Anna Wiedemann, suicide avoidance is a pretty own mission.

“I held my nephew, Matthew James Crick, when he was only 6 several hours previous,” Crick Owen recalled. “That was the get started of our extremely unique relationship for 19 decades. Matt was a great kid — he was clever, handsome, humorous, curious, and just a great human being. He died by suicide on February 27, 2007.”

“I comprehend September is Suicide Prevention thirty day period, but honestly, it is a calendar year spherical wrestle for some,” Wiedemann mentioned. “Last year we dropped a local community member who researched the brain,” she said, referring to Dr Jeremy Richman whose daughter, Avielle, was 1 of 26 individuals killed at Sandy Hook Elementary College in 2012. “Our neighborhood mourned and turned informed, and that is when my problem grew. We will need to retain mastering, sharing, and achieving out.”

Very first-Hand Expertise

Crick Owen reflected that shedding a beloved a single to suicide is just terrible.

“Families battle with why this occurred whilst going as a result of the grieving method,” she stated, possessing professional it firsthand. “Matt was hurting too much to recognize the agony his loss of life would bring about his family members and mates.”

But the selectman and lifelong group member reported she thinks that silver linings can arrive from hardships and losses relevant to suicide.

“The town’s initiative on suicide avoidance is a silver lining for me,” Crick Owen stated. “Our workforce wants to enable our local community by furnishing training and means. Suicide is a subject men and women do not like to talk about and there is a stigma connected to it. I am hopeful that this initiative will get started the dialogue, aid people and minimize the stigma.”

Wiedemann agreed.

“The stigma bordering suicide completely requires to be taken out,” she explained.

‘Okay To Not Be Okay’

As a member and recent chair for the community’s Commission on Getting older (COA), Wiedemann’s existing worry is “now, with the pandemic, social isolation is using its toll.”

“After viewing the Senior Centre grow and thrive, acquiring it become an inclusive, caring location the place loads of men and women have been coming on a everyday foundation to take classes or just socialize, [I believe] seniors like lots of others, are absent from liked kinds and good friends who can not vacation,” she said.

In an attempt to cure the isolation, Wiedemann explained she phone calls a quantity of people weekly to examine in.

“There is a major modify in frame of mind these many months later, so my worry has heightened,” she stated. “I’m hoping that with the addition of Zoom, we can offer a number of informational subject areas geared in the direction of senior citizens, youth, mothers and fathers, lecturers, clergy, and community. I believe supplying this virtually allows for any individual to truly feel snug logging on to pay attention. Our purpose is to help save as several life as doable.”

Crick Owen mentioned Newtown’s Section of Human Products and services (DHS) is also readily available to supply guidance.

“Its mission is to aid a superior good quality of everyday living for the Newtown community as a result of solutions, courses, and info that promote mental, physical and social nicely-being,” she stated. “DHS is an first issue of access for individualized guidance to discover methods that satisfy your unique wants, obtain to a comprehensive referral process, care navigation, and aid with programs for regional, condition, and federal social service packages.”

The DHS can be reached at 203-270-4330.

‘Talk Saves Lives’

At the newest assembly of organizers previously this week, Crick Owen reported contributors clarified that Newtown will transfer forward partnering with the American Foundation for Suicide Avoidance (AFSP) to provide data on suicide avoidance. Their site is

In addition, the group is arranging to host an AFSP presentation, “Talk Will save Lives,” to the local community at minimum 2 times before the end of the yr.

“‘Talk Will save Lives’ is a local community-based presentation that is an introduction to suicide prevention that covers the common scope of suicide, the research on avoidance, and what folks can do to combat suicide,” Crick Owen explained. “We will also do presentations in 2021.”

For emergencies, people are asked to get in touch with 911, and for added guidance, simply call the Trevor Lifeline toll-totally free at 866-488-7386 — this services is supplied by The Trevor Task (

“And if you are in disaster, make sure you phone the Nationwide Suicide Avoidance Lifeline at 800-273-8255. Or call the disaster text line by texting Speak to 741741,” Crick Owen implored. “During these unprecedented periods — and, in fact, any time — it is all right to not be ok. There is assistance and we want to inform you of people methods.”

Newtown inhabitants can look for additional announcements about the nearby suicide awareness and prevention initiative in The Newtown Bee and its social network web sites, as effectively as on the municipal internet site