Region 5 Suicide Advisory Board
March Newsletter

Content warning: this newsletter discusses suicide and suicide statistics.
If you or someone you know is thinking about suicide:
In CT, call 800-HOPE-135 or 211 (press 1 for crisis, 2 for adults), Call/Text – 988 
Region 5 Suicide Advisory Board
This advisory board includes local prevention council representatives, clinicians, people with lived experience, prevention professionals, school social workers and psychologists, healthcare, crisis intervention specialists and law enforcement.

R5SAB meetings are an opportunity to discuss:
  • emerging trends & high-risk populations
  • resources, training and funding 
  • training needs
  • and create connections with regional partners
Next meeting: March 22, 2023 at 10:00AM on Zoom
Sign up for the R5 Suicide Advisory Board here
CT Suicide Advisory Board
Mission: The CTSAB is a network of diverse advocates, educators and leaders concerned with addressing the problem of suicide with a focus on prevention, intervention, and health and wellness promotion.

Vision: The CTSAB seeks to eliminate suicide by instilling hope across the lifespan.

Join the CTSAB and its listserv here.
Gambling and Risk for Suicide
Problem Gambling Awareness Month (PGAM) is a grassroots campaign that depends on the participation of NCPG state Affiliate, organizational and individual members, state health agencies, gambling companies, recovery groups and a wide range of healthcare organizations and providers.

To get more involved in Problem Gambling Awareness Month, check out the statewide calendar of events or the Region 5 Problem Gambling Awareness Team.
Warning Signs

  • Hopelessness
  • Mood changes
  • Withdrawing from friends, family, or society
  • No reason for living; no sense of purpose in life
  • Increase in risky activities
  • Increase in substance use
  • Anxiety, agitation (also unable to sleep or sleeping all the time)
Gambling Disorder

  • Hopelessness
  • Mood changes
  • Withdrawing from friends, family, or society
  • No reason for living; no sense of purpose in life
  • Increase in risky activities
  • Increase in substance use
  • Anxiety, agitation

  • Losses
  • Gambling problems, financial problems, illegal activities becoming public
  • Given up hope of controlling or stopping gambling
Protective Factors
  • Involvement in school
  • Delay of onset
  • Planning and decision making
  • Sense of purpose, community values youth 
  • Self-confidence and well-being, self-esteem, empowerment
  • Strong parental bonding, parental monitoring, family support
  • Social competence, life-skills training 
  • School anti-gambling/gaming policies  
  • Youth action initiatives, communicating healthy norms about gambling /gaming
  • Increased use of treatment facilities by students, increased referrals by staff  
Connecticut State Suicide Prevention Plan 2025
The Connecticut State Suicide Prevention Plan 2025 (PLAN 2025) is designed to frame, organize, prioritize and direct established and emerging suicide prevention, intervention and postvention response efforts throughout the state through 2025.

Goal 4: Reduce access to lethal means of suicide among individuals with identified suicide risk. 

  1. Encourage healthcare providers who interact with individuals at risk for suicide to routinely assess for access to lethal means. 
  2. Partner with firearm dealers and gun owners to incorporate suicide awareness as a basic tenet of firearm safety and responsible firearm ownership. 
  3. Develop and implement new technologies and techniques to reduce access to lethal means.

What can we do?
  • Publicize opportunities (e.g., drop boxes and “take-back” programs) to safely dispose of prescription drugs and poisons.
  • Review firearm safety curriculum pistol permit course to see what safety and suicide prevention is included and then provide recommendations. 
  • Explore integrating safe storage of medications and firearms in smart home safety protocols and recommendations geared towards families. 
Text CT to 741-741
Resource Highlight
The mission of Black Mental Wellness, Corp. is to provide access to evidence-based information and resources about mental health and behavioral health topics from a Black perspective, to highlight and increase the diversity of mental health professionals, and to decrease the mental health stigma in the Black community.
Upcoming Learning & Outreach Opportunities
Register for this Connecticut Clearinghouse Forum here.
Contact for more information.
Mental Health Spotlight
Congratulations to Bethel High School’s Pillar of the Year,
Ms. Sheila Levine!
Sheila's dedication to supporting her community knows no limits. In addition to serving as co-chair of Bethel Community Cares Coalition, she also sits on Western CT Coalition's Board of Directors and holds membership on multiple committees, including the Regional Suicide Advisory Board and the Drug Free Schools Committee. Thank you for all that you do Sheila, congratulations!