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Steps to Take for Workplace Suicide Prevention featured image

Steps to Take for Workplace Suicide Prevention

While work can fill one with personal confidence and can be great for mental health, a negative work environment or work-related stress can cause the opposite. Therefore, employers and others in leadership positions should put measures in place to promote good mental health for their employees.

Have a plan in place to support colleagues and employees with mental health conditions or who may be at risk of suicide.

Even other employees, who tend to get to know their coworkers over time, are in an excellent position to notice behavioral changes that could suggestion suicide risk or other mental health issues. So, include them in training.

Creating a strong culture of safety and good health in the workplace is good for the morale of your most valuable assets – your employees – and good for business because good mental health leads to enhanced workforce productivity.

Connect a suicide prevention program with any other resources you may already have to help employees get help when they need it. Use a comprehensive approach

Create a great work environment with great lines of communication. Include a sense of respect and belonging and connectedness.

Suicide rates tend to be higher in some occupations, especially those with low-skill, low-level jobs, such as laborers, factory

workers, cleaners and machine operators. They are at a significantly higher suicide risk.

The lowest suicide rate tends to be among high-level managers and clerical workers. Police, farmers, healthcare providers and veterinarians are others with an elevated risk of suicide.

One study speculates that the difference in the suicide rate among occupations is socio-economic – people with less education, lower-income and reduced available healthcare.

The study suggests a need for suicide prevention to target the people in those lower-skilled jobs due to their limited access to money, social and healthcare resources, or protective influences. It states that more research is needed to confirm the suicide risk correlation with occupation and to determine the cause of the elevated risk.

Use these strategies to support mental health and contribute to suicide prevention:

· Encourage people to seek help

· Increase your knowledge and awareness of mental health and substance abuse disorders

· Make it easier for employees to access behavioral health care

The Suicide Prevention Resource Center’s Effective Suicide Prevention Model helps develop and implement a suicide prevention program.

The model includes three elements working together – strategic planning, keys to success and a comprehensive approach. That combination is successful to achieve desired outcomes with limited resources.

The three elements can help you:

· Develop a suicide prevention plan, with services, policies and practices using a data-driven process

· Use multi-coordinated, evidence-based strategies to address suicide prevention

· Select appropriate strategies for your specific population and setting

You can adapt the prevention program to suit your needs, but it is always best to start with a strategic planning process. Trying to do strategic planning without using the keys to success is likely to lead to a less effective suicide prevention program.

Disclaimer: The information contained in this article is for general educational information only. This information does not constitute legal advice, is not intended to constitute legal advice, nor should it be relied upon as legal advice for your specific factual pattern or situation.