‘Rolling Nightmare’ of Suicide Attempts Prompts First Nation Community to Declare State of Emergency
A First Nation community of 2,000 in Canada has declared a state of emergency after 11 of its members tried to take their own lives on the same day.
CTV News reported on Sunday that the remote northern community of the Attawapiskat First Nation in Ontario experienced an additional 28 suicide attempts last month. More than 100 people in the community have attempted suicide since last September, and one person died, according to CTV. The youngest was 11, the oldest 71.
Charlie Angus, the local member of parliament, told the Canadian Press it was part of a “rolling nightmare” of more and more suicide attempts among young people throughout the winter.
The Canadian Press said the regional First Nations government was sending a crisis response unit including social workers and mental health nurses to the community following the declaration. The Health Canada federal agency said in a statement that it had sent two mental health counsellors as part of that unit. …
Canada’s 1.4 million Indigenous people, who make up about 4% of the country’s population, have higher levels of poverty and a lower life expectancy than other Canadians and are more often victims of violent crime, addiction and incarceration.
Canada’s CBC news said triggers for the spate of suicide attempts included drug abuse, physical and sexual abuse and bullying at school.
—Posted by Alexander Reed Kelly.WAIT, BEFORE YOU GO…
If you're reading this, you probably already know that non-profit, independent journalism is under threat worldwide. Independent news sites are overshadowed by larger heavily funded mainstream media that inundate us with hype and noise that barely scratch the surface. We believe that our readers deserve to know the full story. Truthdig writers bravely dig beneath the headlines to give you thought-provoking, investigative reporting and analysis that tells you what’s really happening and who’s rolling up their sleeves to do something about it.
Like you, we believe a well-informed public that doesn’t have blind faith in the status quo can help change the world. Your contribution of as little as $5 monthly or $35 annually will make you a groundbreaking member and lays the foundation of our work.