MONTANA: Anti-Suicide Bill’s Passage Has Personal Meaning for Sponsor

May 05, 2017

News Type:  Weekly Spark, Weekly Spark News
Speaker:  Montana

Independent Record

A new suicide prevention bill has been signed into law by the Montana governor. The bill allocates $1 million for suicide prevention efforts across the state, including funding for activities that target Native youth, grants to schools, and ongoing financial support for community-based organizations, such as veterans groups. According to the requirements of the bill, grant activities must be evidence-based or guided by the recommendations of the Montana Suicide Mortality Review Team. The bill also clarifies the responsibilities of the state suicide prevention officer to include coordination of all suicide prevention activities conducted by state agencies, and the development and management of a statewide suicide prevention program. Matt Kuntz, executive director of the National Alliance on Mental Illness Montana, said that the bill’s strength is its requirement that suicide prevention programs be based on “practices that have been proven to work,” allowing for solutions that are innovative and community-based, but grounded in scientific evidence.

Spark Extra! Read the Montana Surveillance Success Story.