In 2017 Oregon had the 19th highest suicide rate in the country and Washington County’s rate has historically been similar. Suicide is the 7th leading cause of death in Washington County. Like many other communities, Washington County’s population with the highest suicide rates are veterans, and non-Hispanic white males age 65 and older. Washington County experiences a death by suicide every five days. For every 2 male deaths by suicide, the county has one female death. 49% of our suicides happen with a firearm. In the county, 91% of suicides are in non-Hispanic whites, but only 69% of the community is non-Hispanic white. Of the younger county residents, 17% of 11th graders seriously consider attempting suicide, and 6% of the 8th graders attempted suicide. Suicide in our county has directly or indirectly affected all ages, races, and veteran statuses. In late 2012, Washington County began serious efforts to reduce suicide in our community, which have since achieved national recognition and a 40% drop in suicide rate.
• Promote responsible media reporting of suicide, accurate portrayals of suicide and mental illness in the entertainment industry, and the safety of online content related to suicide.
• Integrate and coordinate suicide prevention activities across multiple sectors and settings.
• Promote efforts to reduce access to lethal means of suicide among individuals with identified suicide risk.
• Develop, implement and monitor effective programs that promote wellness and prevent suicide and related behaviors.
• Promote suicide prevention as a core component of health care services.
• Evaluate the impact and effectiveness of suicide prevention interventions and systems and synthesize and disseminate findings.