Policy News & Updates

AFSP works hard to create a world in which people no longer die by suicide. While we understand that suicide is personal and complicated, we also know that thoughtful public policies can reduce the number of suicides.

To help make that happen, we work closely with hundreds of well-informed and passionate advocates, all committed to educating officials at every level of government about suicide, and persuading them to act. 

To ensure that public officials and the general public have the information they need to make informed decisions about suicide, we provide the links below. These links will take you to news and information about advocacy efforts and public policies related to suicide prevention. The links also connect to the work we’re doing here at AFSP, in our Advocacy and Public Policy office, and to our powerful national network of suicide prevention advocates.

AFSP Attends Congressional Panel Discussion on Military and Veteran Suicide


Donnelly briefing 10-24-14

On October 24, 2014 AFSP Manager of Federal Policy Trevor Summerfield and Public Policy Associates Paul Almeida and Andrew Douglas attended a Science Roundtable presented by the Military Family Research Institute (MFRI) at Purdue University and sponsored by Senator Donnelly (D-IN). The event focused on the research on and around military mental health and suicide. 

AFSP CEO Responds to Congressman's Suicide Comments


In a statement to POLITICO, Robert Gebbia, CEO of the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention, decried Congressman Don Young’s (R-AK) remarks and called on elected officials to speak about suicide in a more responsible way.

'OK 2 Say' Program Launched in Michigan


A new program aimed at reducing gun violence, bullying, sexting, drug use and suicide in Michigan high schools launched Monday at an assembly at Hackett Catholic Central High School in Kalamazoo. Michigan Attorney General Bill Schuette introduced the “OK 2 Say” program to an audience of high school students.

Nebraska Receives Suicide Prevention Grant for Youth


The Nebraska Department of Health and Human Services has received a five-year grant for $3,646,939 from the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) to reduce the numbers of suicides and suicide attempts among youths and young adults age 10-24 in Nebraska.

Suicide Prevention Commission Meets in Colorado


The Colorado Suicide Prevention Commission will hold its first meeting on Friday, 10/17/2014 at the University of Colorado Anschutz Campus. As an arm of the Colorado Office of Suicide Prevention, the Commission will be tasked with expanding evidence based suicide prevention strategies across the state. 

Suicide Grants at University of Iowa Running Low


The University of Iowa has reported that their office of Counseling Services has referred eight students for hospitalization for suicidal behavior only two months into this semester, the same amount officials said they would normally see in a full year. While administrators maintain that the exact cause of this increase is almost impossible to determine they have reason to believe it is because of the increased outreach the center is doing, not because of an increased rate of depression among students.

New Video: Bullying, Harassment, & Civil Rights


Schools have a responsibility to create safe learning environments for all students. When harassment is based on a protected class and creates a hostile environment, schools have an obligation under federal civil rights laws to take action. Please use the resources identified in this video to support your own efforts to address harassment and help us all build safe, supportive learning environments for our young.

Gillibrand and Velasquez Lead Brooklyn Discussion on Latina Suicide Rates


Senator Kirsten Gillibrand and Representative Nydia Velasquez (D- Brooklyn-Manhattan) were members of a panel discussion on October 6th. The panel also included officials from ‘Life is Precious’ a program of the Communilife group which provides assistance to immigrants and underprivileged communities.