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American Foundation For Suicide Prevention 091717

Sep 13, 2017|

AN INTERVIEW WITH RYAN PRICE WITH AMERICAN FOUNDATION FOR SUICIDE PREVENTION ABOUT THE WORK THEY DO AND THEIR FUNDRAISING WALKS COMING IN OCTOBER.

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Automatically Generated Transcript (may not be 100% accurate)

This is made true scope and Entercom radio Portland public affairs program and your blocks home. As you may be aware of this past week has been suicide prevention week and we'd like to wrap up awareness this week with this interview. On interest of this time I'd like to welcome Ryan price Ryan is the Oregon area director for the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention in there and how has it gone thanks for having me sir thanks for coming in. So did Tony and to me about the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention will be used to yes aware different than some other suicide prevention organizations you know we're not crisis censor anything like that were on the side of funding education and research into suicide prevention not our our missions really simple it's just eleven words. It's to save lives and bring hope to those affected by suicides occur in a different than. Some other suicide prevention organizations that are focused on helping people through a time of crisis. Where on the side of what could we do and how to leave how do we do some more research into figuring out what leads people today how do we see how we save lives from suicide through research and education. What can research is being done all kinds of you know we fund research in that it is in every area are related to suicide prevention so sometimes it's. Biology of new things like looking like pop looking from bio markers in people's blood that might help us to learn more about what causes suicide risk. I'm looking into developing new treatments is well listen you know therapies in a from a site call psychological perspective you know one of the kinds of some treatment modalities that therapists can use to help certain patients that we look at everything if it's related to suicide prevention. I'm saving lives in London will will look at him and what we tend to do is we help people oftentimes early in their career. From since 1987 we funded 550. Years so research grants at a total of I think 35 million dollars. And so we're finding people early in their careers and hopes that they can later get a larger grant from like the CDC or the national institute of mental health. Isn't that research being done local and I'm we'd we'd have to researchers wonder her project ended cheese up you know it just is another one and it's an active crowd I think she was funded last year up in our last grant cycle on both of them are specifically looking at veterans issues and enough. Know enough from about their studies to comment on embryo we have a a scientific council that's nationwide we have one staff and our national office and we the grant process that you know investigators can apply to get their projects funded. And then this team of scientists skits together and evaluates which the studies are. I'm ready to be funded now and then come you know basically sent a pay lineup based on how much we can raise or how much we have raised. To determine which studies get funded and and we we tend to look at ones that have. What we think on our scientific council things have the most stability to save the most lives the fastest. The script. So the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention has a pretty bold goal yeah we do can you tell them yeah sure it's called project Tony 25. And this is an effort for us to reduce the suicide rate in the US 20% by Tony Tony five. And you know unlikely that there are somewhat desperation on goals. This is not an aspiration of all this is a real gold that we've. Put together using something this dynamic systems modeling where we can plug in different variables in different settings. To figure out the critical areas that we needed to focus on. In order to save the most lives the fastest since we really think that. We have on something that's going to be able to get us there and and we know you know this is a project that we set out to do but we are. We know we're not going to be able to do alone it sounds suicide prevention doesn't happen in a vacuum you know so we. Have some partners we worked with one of the areas of the critical areas we know can save lives is in firearms and suicide prevention. We actually worked with an organization called the National Shooting Sports Foundation. And helped us create some materials and as a way to focus on just educating the firearms owning community about suicide prevention. And so it's a big partnerships like that that are gonna help us you know reach our this goal of reducing the suicide rate in the US 20% between 25 that's a really interesting approach that's it's 'cause it's. A lot of people look at it like a guns are bad years you kind of turning that around in educating and we've found that. Their conversations pretty tricky with firearms you know there's people that are very passionate on both sides of the issue and so we've taken an approach to say look. We just wanna make firearms if we wanna make suicide prevention education and basic Tenet of firearms ownership we want and and firearms owners want that to mean 50% around 50% of all suicides. And people die using a firearm and so we have to do a better job at. Teaching the firearms owning community what they can do to save lives and and how to spot the risk factors and warning signs of suicide. Can we talk about some of those respective yeah I definitely think you for for asking so. In one of the common misconceptions of people die by SuSE as we see. You know an event happened in a person's life like a job loss are financial struggles we think that might directly lead to their suicide but often there's. Other underlying things on that are going on week we do you know that about 90% of people who die by suicide house. A diagnosis of the mental health condition at the time of their death and and we don't know how. Often those are being diagnosed and treated would have those numbers but it's it's pretty dumb well accepted that about 90% of people who die by suicide have a mental health condition so. Sometimes those are those are going on there really. On the things that someone might notice when someone's at risk for suicide is a most people. They talk about it in one way or another and sometimes it's joking sometimes they might say something and gone just kidding. Most people do express verbally you know that that they're thinking about suicide and so we suggest is said to take it seriously in my noticed. Me hears someone say something like that you also might. Notice some things that are out of character for a person things like. Sleeping in too little or too much or we're giving away some prized possessions. I'm in my view more agitated or more depressed outside their normal territory lasting and different you know a longer than it might normally not the everybody has mental health and so sometimes we have fluctuations that things that are outside of that especially when you couple that with. Someone who's mentioned eat maybe even a joking way that they're thinking about suicide. That's a sure sign that that you shouldn't harm them reach out. For help innocent it's usually not one thing definitely does not it's a combination of it is yet it's kind of like you know what. There's things that converged to create. A perfect storm of a risk and see how these things that. You know you've maybe do you have someone who's got some prolonged stress they're dealing with some some challenges of work they've also. Recently been diagnosed with depression and oil and and maybe have a history of being abused as a child. When you couple that with some of these other things and then you throw in that a person might have access to something that could be lethal. That's kind of this deadly combination of a risk factors that and it doesn't mean that everyone's gonna. You know die by suicide that has these combinations coming to but it really is a sure sign that you should reach out. And our other always signs. That's a great question. A lot of times. When we talk to them this is anecdotally when I talk to survivors of suicide last. A lot of people will say I just had no idea but then when they learn about the signs that someone might be a risk. They can look back in hindsight and think option I'd I'd I saw these died I didn't know that this was a risk factor in as one of the challenges with. Suicide prevention is that it's a difficult conversation it really is it's not something that we talk about an hour of our culture as much as we opt to and so sometimes. We're not aware about what those signs are NTELOS NTELOS two minutes or encourage people if if you're if you're curious to to look it up you know we have some great resources. Come on our on our website there's also some there's a ton of different opportunities to get trained in suicide prevention and don't take long and I'm Daryn they're typically not you know a moment ago it's whose sister it's an important thing for us to have that conversation I think some of the things that. Are happening on a national scale if you know that. Song bad logic stuff on the 100 number and that some of these kind of raising the bar about the conversation and so. This C added there is there is that sentiment that a lot of people don't know what they're looking for until sometimes it's too late and that's why it's important to have this conversation. And honest conversations talk about yes conversations because. We can avoid it. And that's kind of human nature a little bit to avoid that sort of conversation to have an honest conversation is very important yet you know who we talk about. Having that honest conversation with someone who who might fear risky now. It's it's not always the best thing to dance around it if you're worried someone is thinking about suicide it's OK to ask them it's okay to. Ask them hey you know I've noticed these things. I want to sort of check if your okay you thinking about suicide when you swing you say these things. You know and so so that's a really important factor of attitude to just get to the point and in you can ask directly and a lot of people think what was I gonna plan to see a bit probably well. Research shows that if someone's thinking about it that they might be even relieved and it might be a cathartic. Thing for someone to ask them to be a relief off off their shoulders and you know with that this is why we encourage people to get trampled but without. You know there's some things to. Avoid you know at avoiding advice tips to fix. Someone who might be gone through a tough time is in like I said before we might only see. Some of the exterior factors. It might be easy to tell someone know you have a stroke you have in trouble at work one ages decks lines you'll that might be good advice for their problem at work but if there are underlying factors that we don't know about we don't wanna do then it. We kind of liken it to if on the someone's having a heart attack or Obama stroke you might not say. Hey maybe I eat better quit smoking and exercise more and then I know you get them healthy back right now and it's the same. And if you're worried about someone the best thing to do is is to listen listen to what they've gotten help get them to help that they need. Come spewing does scare people to have that conversation but you know the suicide prevention lifeline in the crisis tax line. They can also help you have a conversation with someone if you worried about it so it doesn't mean you don't have to necessarily be calling. Or texting them beat if you're in a crisis you can you can call and say hey I need some help with this right now what do I do and you can also Dina do some. Some dating online and in also get some of that training tune it if you're worried about someone who don't don't feel like you know you have if you only can you're only allowed to call the crisis line if if if you're in crisis if you if you're curious about how to help someone that you heard about you can call them attacks that. That's great advice 'cause and probably most people don't think that when you think OK this is for somebody who isn't priced right but. Are there any statistics that talk about maybe somebody who you suspect is maybe thinking about suicide and you talk to them and they're not. Forthcoming about. I don't know about statistics for that and you know what we do what we dude. Tell people and some of the introductions that we do and again these are these are free trains and we can we're happy to come into a thirty minute introduction. I'm for free. To suicide prevention but what we say is that. You know kind of generally one of two things is gonna happen and say they're thinking about suicide. And and their honest about it it's it's a cathartic thing they'll open up. I'll be there they're they're not going to be forthcoming with an end and they're gonna continue to maybe be deceptive but it's still might plant the seed can disperse and actually does care. Or C. They're gonna they're gonna kind of like but no way that's the furthest thing from my mind and even if you know what we say is. If you're worried about someone getting upset at you for asking. You know. What's the value did you lose a friend or do you wanna save a life and if you lose a friend of someone gets out upset because you asked you know maybe if they were thinking about suicide and and and and they get upset for a but. You might have saved their life too and you will never know that. I just having that conversation is it's so important to you how important so do we talk a little bit about some of statistics is suicide on the Ryan's. Or not polarize it yeah it in engender in general for the past thirty years on suicide rates have ticked up. No we didn't seem. An increased rate after you know related to the financial crisis and in 2000 opinion in in general. Suicide rates are on the rise and our country. And about in Oregon in general in Oregon as well yeah we we generally follow the same kind of trends. That we do the debt that we see across the country yes it was a right now or again I'm suicide as the eighth leading cause of death. Com with a with a thirteen highest thirteenth highest rate for states in the country. And that means that about 760 people die by suicide and organ every year while. He lets disheartening to it is and and I think Ted even compound that extra. We see that there's about forty people who are who are on severely impacted by the loss of someone so. These are people is a family members and friends coworkers. People that that knew that. Yet if there's a major ripple effect when someone dies by suicide for sure. So you do have some events coming up the news. That are of the educational events. Both educational awareness and and fundraising events yeah we have some things called that the out of the darkness walks. They have two or seven walks in the state are our two biggest ones are our Portland and Salem and those both take place. In October Portland is October 7 and Salem is just the next Saturday in October 14 and there are free fundraising walks that. I'm Lotta people they will I don't know wanna go to a suicide prevention thing that's going to be a bomber we we try to make it as a positive of an event as possible. I'm we play uplifting music all the speeches are positive and and then we walk around and and you'll be with. You know two or 3000 people also in in each of those Sam eased in Portland and Salem both who have been impacted by suicides he won't you won't be alone that's that's for sure. And there's an area in all of our walks where we. I'm allows space for remembering those that that we've lost to suicide but again overall it's weak we do our best to make it a positive experience and it's also. I'm you know as much as we're raising awareness it's a fundraising walk for us that's where I'm we fund our ability to do research and provide education. And so although it is free we do encourage people trying to make a donation or raise funds if they can. Do you have survivors that speak we generally do yeah most of the people that go to the walk. They are either of either or and and sometimes both. On survivors of suicide lost those who have lost someone to suicide. Or they've survived an attempt at taking her own life and now they actively struggle with thoughts of suicide and self. That's primarily the people. That that are there those have been impacted more deeply than than others. So the Portland baucus coming up on the seventh of October just seal Marcus the fourteenth of a gas. Working people get more information about this one yes and they can just go to either out of the darkness dot org that's one word out of the darkness stopped organic can also go to. Our Oregon chapter website which is AF SP dot or back slash or again. I'm in there my contact information is on there as well as information about our programs and our chapters some of the volunteers that. I'm and to do the important work for us in the chapter how did you Brian Price the ordinary director of the American foundation for Susan infants and how did you. Get into the slave port yeah so I was actually a retail manager for a long time and I knew I didn't wanna spend my. My nights and weekends and holidays. The selling you know sporting goods and so I went back to school and studied nonprofit management missed him a couple of areas that have been. Com important for me and hand their mental health and suicide prevention. Is an area beneath him prior to. Securing my degree working in a professional I was volunteering in and involved because of a family history of mental health and and suicide. Who can talk about the stigma a little too late and mental health has its own steam those and suicide has its own stigma yeah how the week. What are the stigma is and how can we get past those that's great so talking about it's really important you know we did a national. Public opinion poll and it and it has national credibility we worked with another organization and so it's. Sig statistically significant and it was about 90% of people. That we surveyed say that they view mental health and physical health is being equally important so. I don't know what the stigma exists for us in in terms of seeking help for from mental health of if 90% of people see it's equally important that there's a stigma some times. That we put on ourselves you know. And oftentimes will we see when we go into a place to talk about suicide does that. People come up and thank us after as a thank you for talking about it I lost money. Can you name it to suicide never never told anybody about hitting just gave me permission to talk about it. And so you know it takes someone bold enough to say hey you know this impacted me would you help. And then people come out of the woodwork that you'd you would never know either struggled. And with that with thoughts as soon as senators made an attempt who have lost someone to sue us and so I think it's really important to talk. Talk about your experience if you have been impacted I mean you've seen. The impact that some celebrities can have when they share about their own struggles of mental health from the treatment that Dave Dave received him in that that is. I'm in of people share that on social media and it's really important things we can do that ourselves too and just talk about it as well as. You know seeking help for yourself if you're if you're worried about your own mental health if you're not human right it's okay. To get help calm for the in a mental health parity requires insurers to cover mental health treatments. And so it's important to talk to your doctor if you worried about about yourself and so those are some there an easy things to do you know. The walks are great when we talk about suicide prevention we have 3000 people who are walking in support of suicide prevention at the big. A way to kind of decrease the stigma and the walks have grown every year. And that's not tied to an increase in suicides it's tied to an increase in. More people feeling comfortable. Coming out of the closet talking about their lost when their experience with suicide and and helping her raise awareness so. Does that things have come to the walk if you're curious talk about it with your co workers or your family talk that your own struggles either with mental health. Or in and talk about losses you might have experience with that due to suicide and those are all things really make a difference. Well having those honest conversations he is very important. There are some guidelines spread there's some may be some do's and don't sleep with one of them consider when talking you out of the people in this is one of the big things is that. There's a common phrase that would that we've all heard and that's the term committed suicide until we really want to try. And avoid bad news things like. Died by suicide you know I didn't and this is pricing means who might be a surprise to me to a lot of people listening to that. You know you commit adultery in you do you commit a felony for you you die by suicide and and it's a subtle way to. Help shift the conversation in and change until we we think about suicide bomb but it's an important 12 and you know and sometimes. It's also important to talk about. But it does hope that comes after that and and that there is hoping that there are organizations that are there are 24 hours a day seven days a week they can help people. I'm if you're struggling there are organizations like us that are funding research there's great organizations that. Our our very specifically focused on some areas of suicide prevention goes a great group called the Trevor project's been really sole focus. Is education research and crisis management. Four LG BTQ people. And suicide prevention this is a really great groups out there that. Debt are. Kind of turning. You know this really awful thing that is suicide in the something hopeful and and we're. We're making progress would you know a lot of times we we hear this term where the tipping point with suicide prevention and a lot of ways. The the momentum is beginning to shift in terms of that amount of research that's being funded the amount that people are talking about suicide. And so while it's a devastating thing it's it's important soon change language use about it. Let's say things like died by suicide vs. That the C word he's not in committed. Found and and tend to think about who look at and and highlight that the hope that exists for people who lost someone to suicide as well as those who struggle the hope is that one of the biggest factors rate is at someone who has. Contemplating. Susan and perhaps feels quite hopeless and that yes that's that's and that's one of the big. I'm feeling that people express if he doesn't survive an attempt in you know one of them. When the interesting things that it was really a surprise to me before learning you know about this research is that. One of the most important things we can do to save a life we and that crisis period is to put time. Between the person who's in crisis and the method that they have in their mind to take my silk. To bridge barriers in signs that have the suicide prevention lifeline. If someone goes to that bridge with that in a much in their mind to take their own life in the and they they can't because of a barrier. Often a life is sameness especially when they can get you know with the help that they need to not intern to the crisis point itself. That's a really important thing to ten know that it and even you know sometimes with those bridge theirs they don't find another method which is interesting to me. You you give that time for that person to exit out of that crisis periods you know look we say when people are in that you know suicidal crisis. Is that. They they develop a sense of tunnel vision where. All they can think of as a way out and so it's almost akin to. If you can imagine the most intense physical pain that you've ever been and I'm for some people it's broken bone or the birth of the child or something like that. The try to imagine at that moment. Could you give accurate and clear directions to your house it the answer is probably not yet interest and that's the kind of tunnel vision that happens is someone in a suicidal crisis is that. Didn't they just can't think clearly about what's happening around himself when you do something like you put time between. Then method that they have in their mind you save a life they can get through that crisis time get help. And and oftentimes they don't look for another method. That seems like very important information you really wealth in ensuring that that's great so things like you know. Not putting an inexpensive sensor on a car that would shut the car off fifth. Carbon monoxide levels went to high or. Blister packaging medication that become that could become lethal making it more difficult to access those a couple of those in the things that. They can save a life. The last couple moments we have you let's talk again about the walks or coming up he knew where they are yeah and the dates of those were able to get more information I think US out of the darkness stop or it's one word out of the darkness dot org that's the best place. We have over foreign walks across the country so even this year you know friends and family in different parts of the country. They can go there to find that will serve another event and I wanted to mention to in this is this gonna goes back to Doug part of our mission where we provide hope. Armed to those who have been affected by suicide. Is listening called survivor day and it's. We call survivor named it's really international survivors of suicide lost day. Tom there events all across the country can go to survivor Dane dot org and it's really a place for people to come together the Saturday before Thanksgiving. And I'm connect with other people who've lost someone to suicide Obama can be really. Amazing experience and especially for people who. They're going into their first holiday season after losing someone to suicide can be really tough thing we. Like to provide some practical tips and hints and some hope for people go especially going to their first. Holiday season them to can be really great trip great place to come it's also free of and that's just survivor day dot org. While you do listen great and useful information to tackle so I think you know I think some of turbulence on the thanks for having. I'm even talking to David Brian Price the orient area director of the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention. Let's get Mitchell's bill is an Entercom radio Portland public affairs program I'm Gary blocks of if you're involved with a nonprofit or public affairs organization or do you have an idea for an upcoming show I'd like to hear from you. Visit the microscope PDX dot com and submit your ideas you can also go to the station's website handsome richer information there. Thanks for listening to microscope can enjoy the rest of your weekend.