Recommendations for: Youth suicide prevention training for early identification and referral (gatekeeper training)


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


Lessons Learned Working Group
Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA)

These recommendations were developed for SAMHSA grantees and others interested in implementing community-based youth suicide prevention training. Recommendations are intended to specifically address gatekeeper training that is designed to equip members of the community to identify youth with an increased potential for suicide and refer them to appropriate sources of help.


Developed by the Lessons Learned Working Group (LLWG), Recommendations for Youth Suicide Prevention Training for Early Identification and Referral (Gatekeeper Training) provides research-based recommendations for those interested in selecting or developing, and then implementing a gatekeeper training program to prevent suicide. The Recommendations were developed based on (1) a review of the available research literature, (2) data collected from Garrett Lee Smith Memorial Act (GLS) grant sites, and (3) direct input from selected GLS grantees. The group created seven recommendations for the selection or development, as well as implementation, of gatekeeper training programs to identify and refer those at risk for suicide. Draft versions of the Recommendations were then reviewed and modified based on input from program developers and experts in the field of suicide prevention. Because these recommendations are based on research and evaluation and informed by lessons learned from grantees, the LLWG believes they are likely to improve the effectiveness of gatekeeper training for youth suicide prevention.


Those who read the recommendations will have:
1.Increased understanding of protocols that should accompany gatekeeper training programs to increase effectiveness and safety.
2.Increased awareness of the importance of tailoring gatekeeper training programs to meet local needs.
3.Increased knowledge of the importance of selecting gatekeepers who are likely to be effective in their gatekeeper role.