State lawmakers unveil new push to prevent suicide in Ohio

COLUMBUS (WCMH) —  There’s a new push in Ohio to end suicide which is more common and affects more families than what people may think.

For state representative Marlene Anielski, the new legislation to help prevent suicide is personal.

“For those who don’t know, I lost my 18-year-old son on March 4, 2010 and he was a senior in high school,” she said during a conference Thursday.

In honor of her son, Joe, Anielski helped work on free suicide prevention training and, along with the Ohio Department of Mental Health and Addiction Services, helped launch a $2 million push to expand suicide prevention services across college campuses.

About 1,100 college students commit suicides each year across the U.S.

Ohio Life Saver will include resources on college websites, free 24/7 crisis hotlines and text support.

Research for suicide prevention increased training for those who work with at-risk individuals and provided new resources for survivors of suicide. It also raises awareness to reduce the stigma of suicide. “Remove the stigma. Just as we have for physical health, we also need first aid for mental health,” said Anielski.

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