We are deeply saddened by the death of Stephen “tWitch” Boss, DJ, dancer and producer, who died of an apparent suicide at the age of 40. Whether one is in the public limelight or maintains a private profile known only to family and friends, the loss of a life from suicide often leaves in its wake intense grief, confusion, fear, anger and guilt, the ripples of which go on for years, and across generations. Suicide is at crisis proportions in the U.S. with a suicide death occurring every 11.5 minutes. Statistics show that 90% of those who died by suicide had a diagnosable mental health condition at time of death, but only 46% of adults with a mental health condition received treatment in the previous year. These tragedies highlight the need for us to continue to fight against the stigma associated with mental illness and bolster treatment and other community resources.
In addition to our Zero Suicide initiative, Endeavor was recently awarded a federal grant for Mental Health Awareness Training. This grant will support the provision of training throughout our community on how to respond appropriately and safely to individuals who suffer from extreme stress, grief, trauma, and mental health disorders. Included in the project will be an emphasis on the immediate need for awareness, support and access to care for those individuals in need.
“To anyone out there who’s hurting – it’s not a sign of weakness to ask for help. It’s a sign of strength.” (Barack Obama). Dial “988” to reach the Suicide and Crisis Lifeline.