September is National Suicide Prevention Awareness Month - which will be recognized at Piedmont Virginia Community College through an event organized by the Lock & Talk Virginia campaign, brought by the Health Planning Region One Suicide Prevention Committee. WMRA's Marguerite Gallorini talked with its program coordinator Rebecca Textor.
REBECCA TEXTOR: When we think about National Suicide Prevention Month, what we really want to do is to remember those we've lost to suicide and support those who are survivors of suicide; but also, give some hopeful messaging on things that we can do practically to help our community be safer from suicide.
That's Rebecca Textor, the program coordinator for the Lock & Talk Virginia campaign.
TEXTOR: That is mostly about lethal means safety and keeping firearms locked and safe, and also medication locked and safe. We know that the two main means of suicide in our region are going to be protected in a household.
Today [Friday, September 29] is their third annual event called "The Strength It Takes," at PVCC from 11 am to 3.30 pm. The speakers are Dr. Jerry Reed, Director of the National Suicide Prevention Resource Center, and Lt. Deuntay Diggs who will talk about his own difficulties growing up.
TEXTOR: He's also known as the dancing cop: he's actually been on America's Got Talent. He has a lot of energy and he wants to talk about getting through those hard times and then he's also going to speak about how he handles suicide behavior in law enforcement.
There will also be a one-hour training on the 3 simple steps in preventing suicide: Question, Persuade, and Refer. The event is free and you can still register on Eventbrite.com. You can also visit the website lockandtalk.org for more information about the year-long training they provide.