Working to Prevent Suicide Among Young People

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The issue of suicide prevention is a focus around the world and in the Valley Thursday on World Suicide Prevention Day.

Counselors at James Madison University are trying to let students know the resources available to them should they feel troubled.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, suicide is the third leading cause of death among people age 15 to 24.

In 2006, 12 out of every 100,000 people between 20 and 24 took their own lives. Males are about four times as likely as females to die by suicide.

On JMU's campus Thursday, counselors held events to raise awareness and put this issue into perspective.

"It needs to be discussed. There needs to be information. There needs to be more awareness of it because it is preventable," says Dr. Ilene Magee, with JMU's Counseling and Student Development Center.

"I think a lot of times, people feel like if they bring the subject up, they're going to make someone more likely to die by suicide, which isn't the case," says Katie Baird, a graduate student working with the CSDC.

The Campus Suicide Prevention Center of Virginia is also located at JMU. A conference is scheduled for mid-October for students and faculty.