GRAND JUNCTION, Colo. — Suicide is a serious issue in Colorado, and Mesa county is no exception. That’s why it was important for one Colorado legislator to pass the suicide prevention bill.
“The suicide rate in Colorado is quite high, and Mesa County has the highest suicide rate in the state of Colorado,” says Colorado State House Representative Janice Rich, representing District 55.
“Mesa county definitely fits the mold when we look at more isolation, a culture that promotes more independence, high rates of fire arms and access to fire arms,” says Hali Nurnberg, the Executive Director of Counseling and Education Center.
The bill passed its final vote unanimously, and on Thursday, Governor Polis signed it into law. The bill provides suicide prevention training for primary care and behavioral health providers.
Mental health professionals like Nurnberg say these resources are an important component of preventing suicide.
“There are programs out there that are very beneficial and I think we could all use a little bit more of support on how we can help people who are having thoughts of suicide,” says Nurnberg.
The bill also goes hand in hand in combating suicide rates with some of the other resources currently available in the state, like the crisis line.
Anyone experiencing a crisis, or have friends and family that might need help can call the crisis line at 1-844-493-8255 or text “TALK” to 38255.