Suicide prevention resources in Southern Colorado

11 News this Morning at 6 am
Published: Sep. 15, 2023 at 7:53 AM MDT
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COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. (KKTV) - September is Suicide Prevention Awareness Month, which remembers those who have taken their own life, support everyone struggling with suicidal ideations and raise awareness on suicide prevention.

“It’s important to remember during Suicide Prevention Awareness Month that suicide is very preventable. It’s very simple steps that can help us reduce deaths by suicide including taking suicide prevention training, checking in with someone who you think might be struggling, and just normalizing the conversation about mental health and making it okay to ask for help,” said Cass Walton, Executive Director of Pikes Peak Suicide Prevention and Partnership.

Walton tells 11 News it’s important to remember anyone could be having suicidal thoughts and it’s a lot more common than people think.

“There are some common warning signs that we do see. This includes a change in behavior or presentation. So, someone who seems standoffish who normally is not like that, someone who seems more emotional like they’re getting angry or they’re getting really sad and that’s not normally how they present, someone who’s engaging in behaviors that you’ve never seen before. That could be like drinking too much or being late to things, not being as reliable to things as you’re used to them being and then, if you know if they’re going through a situation of crisis, like divorce, financial stress,” explained Walton.

Walton adds the 2 most common risk factors for someone who may be contemplating suicide are people who are less likely to ask for help and those with access to a firearm. The 2022 El Paso County Coroner’s Report shows a little more than 60% of deaths by suicide for that year involved a firearm.

If you are concerned someone is struggling with thoughts of suicide, the best thing to do is reach out to them. Start the conversation with why you are concerned and help them find resources.

“Some really good places to find help would be calling 988. You can call or text 988. You can call Colorado crisis services and what’s nice is even if you get on the line and they figure out that you’re not in crisis they have peer support specialist that can talk to you. If you have continued need to see someone in person, you could go out to the walk-in center at the Lighthouse. It’s over by Parkside Drive, you can go into any ER and do a walk-in assessment that way,” said Walton.



Organization Websites:

Pikes Peak Suicide Prevention

The Suicide Prevention Collaborative of the El Paso County

Race Against Suicide

Join the Pikes Peak Suicide Prevention and Partnership at their annual Race Against Suicide charity event. This brings awareness to those struggling with suicide or who have lost someone to suicide. It also helps the PPSPP continue their mission of providing free suicide resources to the Pikes Peak region. Find all that info here.