New Law to Help Fight Teen Suicide Rate

New Law to Help Fight Teen Suicide Rate

( – There was a time when mental illness and suicide simply weren’t discussed. That stigma changed over time, and suicide prevention movements are now increasingly common. In fact, one of the most popular songs of 2017 was Logic’s “1-800-283-8255,” a tune literally named after the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline number. Now, states are trying to combat the issue of teen suicide by changing legislation.

Lawmakers in Illinois, South Carolina, and Arizona want to make it easier for kids to know how to get help if they are feeling suicidal. That’s why they recently passed laws that will put the phone number for the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline, as well as the text number, on student ID cards.

Parents of children who took their own lives, and the health officials who often support them and their families, are celebrating the new change.

Jennifer Butler, program director of the South Carolina Department of Mental Health Office of Suicide Prevention, played a critical role in penning the new regulatory adjustment within the state. She said suicides among kids ages 10 to 19 increased every year from 2015 through 2019. Data sourced from the CDC shows suicides among people ages 10 to 24 increased by 57% from 2007 to 2018.

Jenny Morales of South Carolina lost her 16-year-old daughter, Tiera Chanelle Hopkins, to suicide in 2012. She called the new law “a huge win” because it makes resources available to kids who need help.

If you or someone you know is experiencing suicidal thoughts, please reach out for help. Call 1-800-283-8255 or contact the Crisis Text Line by texting “home” to 741741.

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