Governor’s Mansion lit up in purple for National Suicide Prevention Awareness Month
BATON ROUGE, La. (WAFB) - The Governor’s Mansion was lit up under bright purple lights on Wednesday, Sept. 13 in recognition of National Suicide Prevention Month, which is observed during September.
The Louisiana Department of Health launched a new campaign aimed at raising awareness, destigmatizing the need for mental health treatment and services, and increasing Louisiana 988 usage statewide.
The purpose is to draw attention to the life-saving services available through the suicide crisis hotline. Officials said a key goal of the campaign is reaching vulnerable populations about the services available through 988.
One in five adults in the U.S. lives with a mental health condition. Death by suicide is the 14th leading cause of death in the state, and it is the third leading cause of death for Louisianans ages 10-34. According to the National Center for Health Statistics, 689 Louisianans died by suicide in 2021.
The campaign is informed by field research that identified three primary barriers to individuals contacting 988:
● Not knowing what to expect when calling 988;
● Fear of being let down when someone is feeling most vulnerable; and
● Fear of overstepping personal boundaries or making things worse for someone else when calling for help.
Key components of the campaign include an aggressive paid media strategy starting with social media advertising, a new website, Louisiana988.org, for people to learn more, and a platform for community partners, advocates, and local influencers to generate their own 988 promotional materials.
You can use Louisiana988.org to chat online with a counselor.
Once you reach out by phone or online, a counselor will be able to connect you with local resources and experts, like a therapist or drug and alcohol recovery services.
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