Idaho Launches Statewide Suicide Prevention Program

Sep 9, 2016

Idaho is working to reduce suicides in the state with a new $1 million program.

The Spokesman-Review reports that lawmakers this year allocated ongoing funding and changed the law that governs the mission of the state Department of Health and Welfare to specifically include suicide prevention.

To celebrate the ongoing efforts, Boise Mayor Dave Bieter on Thursday declared this week Suicide Prevention Week in the city.

Office of Suicide Prevention Director Kim Kaine says the move has played an important role in increasing public awareness.

Idaho's suicide rate has long been above the national average, peaking as the ninth highest rate in the country in 2014, the most recent year for which figures were available, when the rate was 46 percent higher than the national average. A total of 320 residents died by suicide that year.