If the media is ready to change the conversation to suicide prevention, are we ready to help them?


(For resources, this is the publication date. For programs, this is the date posted.)


Draper J.
Injury Control Research Center for Suicide Prevention (ICRC-S)

The executive director of the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline discusses how the suicide prevention community can assist the media in reframing the narrative after a celebrity suicide. In particular he asks, have suicide prevention advocates and practitioners themselves become too focused on what the media shouldn’t do as opposed to what the media can do to prevent suicide. There are many indications that the media is a willing partner. Researchers are working on efforts such as establishing a uniform framework for suicide prevention messaging, preparing the suicide prevention community with stories of suicides prevented and engaging public figures to tell their personal experiences with overcoming suicidal thoughts and how they sought help. Partnering with the media to implement these strategies can assist in changing the message from one of suicide after a celebrity death to one of suicide prevention.