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New York Times article: Small Towns Face Rising Suicide Rates


The New York Times published an article last week detailing the rising suicide rates throughout small towns and rural areas in the US.

The findings stem from a few different studies and reports, namely a report by the CDC on rates of suicide by urbanization of the county of residence, and Journal of the American Medical Association Pediatrics division outlining widening rural-urban disparities in youth suicide.

The article discusses several theories on potential contributing factors including:

  • Isolation
  • Ease of access to high lethality means like firearms
  • A “Cowboy up” attitude to addressing problems, and resistance to asking for help
  • Limited access to sufficient mental health care — The Department of Health and Human Services says 55% of counties in the United States have no psychologists, psychiatrists or social workers
  • Stigma of mental health treatment exacerbated by lack of anonymity

If interested, you can read the full article here.

What do you think of the findings outlined in the article, and the contributing factors they pose? If your helpline is in a rural area, would you agree with what’s outlined in the article? How is your community addressing these issues? We’re interested to hear what you think, leave us a comment!

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Dana joined the iCarol team in 2013 after 12 years of direct service and administrative duties in the Helpline Industry. You'll find her presenting Webinars, Tweeting, Blogging, Facebooking, and producing other materials to help others learn more about iCarol.

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