Advocates from the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention Visit Phoenix to Meet with Lawmakers

 For media requests: Alexis O’Brien, AFSP PR Director, 347-826-3577 or [email protected]

PHOENIX, AZ (January 25, 2016) – Suicide is the tenth leading cause of death in the United States. On average, one person dies by suicide every seven hours in Arizona. On Tuesday, January 26, 2016, advocates from the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention, the largest suicide prevention organization in the United States, will arrive at the state capitol to meet with lawmakers to encourage them to make suicide prevention a priority – including providing training for health professionals.

“Studies indicate that 45 percent of individuals who die by suicide have seen a primary health care provider within the month before their death. If health care professionals were better able to assess, treat and refer patients showing signs related to suicide, we could reduce number of deaths by suicide each year,” said Israel Bateman, AFSP advocate since 2013 and a resident of Glendale, AZ.

Over 40 AFSP advocates from Arizona have appointments with more than 60 local representatives on this State Capitol Day. The advocates are part of a larger national contingent of AFSP volunteers who will be visiting various state capitols across the United States in spring 2016 to bring best practices in mental health and suicide prevention to state legislators and their staff. Advocates include representatives from across the state of Arizona who dedicate their time and energy to helping create positive change in the state.

Suicide in Arizona

Suicide is the third leading cause of death for people aged 35-44 and people aged 10-14 in the state of Arizona. Suicide cost Arizona a total of $1.2 million of combined lifetime medical and work loss cost in 2010, or an average of $1.1 million per suicide death.

The American Foundation for Suicide Prevention is dedicated to saving lives and bringing hope to those affected by suicide. AFSP creates a culture that’s smart about mental health through education and community programs, develops suicide prevention through research and advocacy, and provides support for those affected by suicide. Led by CEO Robert Gebbia and headquartered in New York, AFSP has local chapters in all 50 states with programs and events nationwide. Learn more about AFSP in its latest Annual Report, and join the conversation on suicide prevention by following AFSP on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and YouTube


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