2018 Joint Services Suicide Prevention Proclamation Ceremony

Posted on Dec 7, 2018 in All IPCS News, suicide prevention

On September 5, Navy Region Hawaii hosted a Joint Services Suicide Prevention Proclamation signing at Freedom Tower on Joint Base Pearl-Harbor-Hickam in support of National Suicide Awareness Month.

Governor Ige, Hawaii-based service members, Department of Defense personnel, military families, High School Army and Navy ROTC members, state representatives and community members came together to pledge to help prevent suicide related deaths.

“Sometimes suicide is an unseen and unspoken about in our community, Ige said. As a community we build resiliency by taking care of each other. I encourage everyone to be a light for someone suffering. When we stay connected to our family, friends, neighbors and our community, we can better recognize and help when someone is suffering.” As governor of the state of Hawaii, I am proud to sign this proclamation to invest into our community and make it stronger.”

Governor Ige, Rear Admiral Brian Fort, commander, Navy Region Hawaii Navel Surface Group Middle Pacific and other Hawaii military leaders signed the proclamation.

The event also included more than 200 people forming a human chain in the shape of a yellow suicide awareness ribbon. This is believed to be the first on a military installation on Oahu. Organizers also held a mini-suicide prevention fair that provided information and resources to participants.

Emergency Medical Services and Injury Prevention System Branch (EMSIPSB) and the statewide Prevent Suicide Hawaii Task Force (PSHTF), the major statewide, community-driven suicide prevention/mental health collaborative in Hawaii, includes service members from all branches of the military. All task force members work in suicide prevention/mental health and/or are concerned community members wishing to raise awareness around the issue, and many have also been personally impacted by suicide/mental health issues.

In 2017, the PSHTF in collaboration with EMSIPSB completed a strategic plan to reduce suicide 25% by 2025. This ambitious year and a half undertaking resulted in goals that include; increasing public awareness and communication around suicide; increased statewide capacity for suicide prevention training among multiple levels and disciplines; increased supports among those touched by suicide and those with lived experience; and increased capacity to respond to individuals and communities affected by suicide and those with mental health challenges.

If you or anyone you know is struggling, you can get help by calling the Hawaii Crisis Line. On Oahu the number is 832-3100 and on the Neighbor Islands 1-800-753-6879. The number for the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline is 1-800-273-8255, press 1 for military. You can also send a text to the Text Help Line at 741741. For more information contact Nancy Deeley, Suicide Prevention Coordinator, at 733-9238 or [email protected]