Contact: Gena Orlando (firstname.lastname@example.org)
Suicide Prevention Advocates Gather in Madison for the First Annual State Capitol Day
MADISON, WI (March 4, 2019) – Suicide is the tenth leading cause of death in the United States and the ninth leading cause of death in Wisconsin. On Thursday, March 7, 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 prioritize suicide prevention initiatives for all Wisconsin residents, including efforts to ensure parity in insurance coverage for mental health and substance use conditions.
“In Wisconsin, suicide is the 2nd leading cause of death for ages 15-34. Our state currently ranks 42 out of 51 in access to mental health care for children. This has to change - we have to do better! We hope that by meeting with lawmakers we can increase awareness and resources for suicide to save lives in Wisconsin,” said Gena Orlando, AFSP Wisconsin Chapter Board Chair.
The first annual AFSP Wisconsin State Capitol Day is a special day for all who have a connection with or a personal story around the topic of suicide. Volunteers will meet with their state legislators and share their stories about why they participate in this advocacy effort, giving a human face to this important health problem. Advocates hope that by sharing their stories, they will help legislators understand that state investments in mental health and suicide prevention can save lives.
AFSP Wisconsin advocates are part of a larger national movement of AFSP volunteer advocates who will be visiting over 40 state capitols across the United States in 2019 to bring best practices in suicide prevention to state legislators and their staff. To learn more about AFSP’s advocacy efforts, visit here: https://afsp.org/our-work/advocacy/.
On average, one hundred twenty-nine (129) Americans died by suicide each day in 2017, and 90% of those individuals had a diagnosable mental health condition at the time of their death. AFSP volunteers will urge state lawmakers to be the voice for the thousands of Wisconsin residents affected by suicide each year.
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, with a Public Policy Office in Washington, D.C. 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.