SUICIDE PREVENTION QUARTERLY UPDATE

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ROUTINE

R 272137Z MAY 10

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NAVADMIN 189/10

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SUBJ/SUICIDE PREVENTION QUARTERLY UPDATE//



REF/A/DOC/OPNAV/04AUG2009//

REF/B/DOC/OPNAV/22DEC2009//

REF/C/MSG/CNO WASHINGTON DC/231556Z APR 09//

NARR/REF A IS OPNAVINST 1720.4A, WHICH ESTABLISHES THE NAVY SUICIDE PREVENTION 
PROGRAM AND DIRECTS COLLECTION OF DATA ON NAVY SUICIDES.  REF B, OPNAVINST 
F3100.6J, AND REF C, NAVADMIN 122/09, DIRECT THE REPORTING OF SUICIDES AND 
SUICIDE-RELATED BEHAVIORS VIA THE OPREP-3 REPORTING SYSTEM.//

RMKS/1.  NAVY DEVELOPED THIS QUARTERLY UPDATE AS A TOOL FOR ALL HANDS TO 
ADDRESS THE CRITICAL TOPIC OF SUICIDE PREVENTION.  IT IS IMPORTANT TO 
RECOGNIZE SUICIDE PREVENTION IS AN ALL HANDS EFFORT - EDUCATE YOURSELF ON THE 
ISSUE, FAMILIARIZE YOURSELF WITH THE RESOURCES AVAILABLE, AND SHARE THIS 
KNOWLEDGE WITH YOUR FAMILY AND SHIPMATES IN ORDER TO STRENGTHEN OUR SUICIDE 
PREVENTION NETWORK.  OUR AIM IS TO REMOVE THE BARRIERS THAT STOP OUR PEOPLE 
FROM SEEKING THE SUPPORT AVAILABLE TO THEM BY IMPROVING AWARENESS AND 
ELIMINATING MISPERCEPTIONS.

2.  CY 2010 FIRST QUARTER SUICIDE STATISTICS.  PRELIMINARY REPORTS INDICATE WE 
LOST SIX ACTIVE DUTY SAILORS AND THREE SELECTED RESERVE SAILORS (NOT IN A DUTY 
STATUS) TO SUICIDE FROM 1 JANUARY TO 31 MARCH 2010.  THESE TRAGEDIES AFFECT 
ALL DEMOGRAPHIC GROUPS ACROSS ALL COMMUNITIES.

3.  SUICIDE-RELATED BEHAVIOR.  DURING THIS PERIOD, MORE THAN 350 SAILORS ARE 
STILL ALIVE BECAUSE THEY REACHED OUT FOR HELP OR SOMEONE REACHED OUT TO HELP 
THEM, CONSISTENT WITH OUR SUICIDE PREVENTION TRAINING AND CORE VALUES.

4.  "ACT."  OUR CORE MESSAGE:  IF YOU SEE SOMEONE WHO MAY BE STRUGGLING, REACH 
OUT AND ACT.
  - A - ASK WHAT'S BOTHERING THE PERSON, HOW YOU CAN HELP, IF THEY
        ARE THINKING OF HURTING THEMSELVES.
  - C - CARE BY LISTENING WITHOUT JUDGMENT AND OFFERING HOPE.
  - T - TREAT BY PERSONALLY ASSISTING THE PERSON IN GETTING
        ASSISTANCE THROUGH THEIR CHAIN OF COMMAND, CHAPLAINS, OR
        MEDICAL.  NEVER LEAVE SOMEONE CONSIDERING SUICIDE ALONE!

5.  TRAINING.  A VIDEO ENTITLED "SUICIDE PREVENTION:  A MESSAGE FROM 
SURVIVORS" WAS RECENTLY DISTRIBUTED THROUGH THE GENERAL MILITARY TRAINING 
(GMT) DISTRIBUTION SYSTEM.
THIS POWERFUL VIDEO HAS NO ACTORS; IT CONSISTS OF INTERVIEWS WITH PEOPLE WHO 
HAVE EXPERIENCED SUICIDE LOSS, OR HELPED SOMEONE OVERCOME A SUICIDAL CRISIS, 
AND IS DESIGNED TO AUGMENT TRAINING IN A SMALL GROUP DISCUSSION FORMAT.  IF 
YOUR COMMAND HAS NOT RECEIVED A COPY OF THIS VIDEO, A COPY CAN BE ORDERED 
THROUGH THE DEFENSEIMAGERY.MIL WEBSITE.  LOG ON TO 
HTTPS://WWW.DEFENSEIMAGERY.MIL/PRODUCTS/DAVISDITIS.HTML AND ENTER 806812 IN 
THE SEARCH BLOCK.

6.  TRANSITION.  THE SUMMER SEASON IS OFTEN A TIME OF TRANSITION, INCLUDING 
PCS MOVES, RETURNS FROM DEPLOYMENTS, AND CAREER TRANSITIONS.  NORMAL SUPPORT 
SYSTEMS ARE NOT ALWAYS AVAILABLE DURING TRANSITION AND PERSONNEL MAY NOT KNOW 
EACH OTHER WELL ENOUGH TO RECOGNIZE A CHANGE IN BEHAVIOR.
ALMOST HALF OF ALL NAVY SUICIDES IN RECENT YEARS OCCURRED DURING OR SHORTLY 
AFTER A TRANSITION, MAKING THIS A TIME WHEN EXTRA EFFORT TO STAY CONNECTED CAN 
BE CRITICAL.

7.  "I HALT."  RECOGNIZE WHEN YOU ARE UNDER INCREASED STRESS, HEED THE WARNING 
SIGNS, AVOID BAD JUDGMENT:  AS WE NAVIGATE STRESS AND CHALLENGE, WE MUST BE 
MINDFUL AND PREPARED TO AVOID THE MANY PITFALLS THAT CAN SET US ON DESTRUCTIVE 
PATHS.
PLAN AHEAD TO SET THE FOUNDATION FOR RESILIENCE HEADING INTO THE COMING 
MONTHS.  REGARDLESS OF AGE, EDUCATION, OR EXPERIENCE, WE CAN ALL FIND 
OURSELVES IN CHALLENGING SITUATIONS THAT CAN IMPAIR OUR JUDGMENT.  YOU CAN USE 
THE ACRONYM "I HALT" TO ASSIST IN RECOGNIZING AND CORRECTING THESE SITUATIONS.
  - I - IMPAIRED WITH ALCOHOL OR MEDICATIONS.  ALCOHOL AND OVER THE
        COUNTER OR PRESCRIPTION MEDICATIONS CAN HAVE A NEGATIVE
        EFFECT ON OUR THINKING AND DECISION MAKING.
  - H - HUNGRY.  WE DO NOT OFTEN THINK ABOUT HOW HUNGER OR
        DEHYDRATION IMPACT OUR MOOD, BUT THEY DO.  TRY TO AVOID
        HEATED DISCUSSIONS AND MAJOR PURCHASES WHEN YOU ARE HUNGRY OR
        DEHYDRATED.
  - A - ANGRY.  WHILE THE AGGRESSIVE DRIVER ON THE STREET MAY ANGER
        US, THOSE CLOSEST TO US - SPOUSES, FAMILY, AND CLOSE FRIENDS
        ARE THE ONES WHO CAN REALLY PUSH OUR BUTTONS.  IF YOU FIND
        YOURSELF INFURIATED OR ENRAGED, REALIZE IT IS NOT THE TIME TO
        ADD ALCOHOL, FIREARMS OR VEHICLES TO THE SITUATION.  TAKE
        ACTION TO COOL DOWN SO THAT CLEARER THINKING CAN GUIDE YOUR
        ACTIONS.  EXERCISE CAN HELP LET OFF STEAM.  ANOTHER USEFUL
        TOOL IS THE "DIVE REFLEX" - PUT COLD WATER ON YOUR FACE (OR
        EVEN GRAB A HANDFUL OF ICE).  THIS TENDS TO LOWER YOUR HEART
        RATE FOR A FEW MINUTES AND BUY A LITTLE TIME FOR YOU TO
        EXAMINE YOUR THINKING AND AVOID RASH DECISIONS.  ANGER
        DISTORTS YOUR THINKING AND CAN KILL.  IN THE PAST YEAR, TOO
        MANY SAILORS LOST THEIR LIVES TO SUICIDE OR ACCIDENTS IN
        MOMENTS OF ANGER FUELED BY ARGUMENTS WITH LOVED ONES.
  - L - LONELY.  LONELINESS CAN AFFECT US AT ANY TIME, EVEN WHILE IN
        THE MIDST OF A CROWD.  IT CAN CATCH US UNAWARE PARTICULARLY
        IF WE HAVE EXPERIENCED A LOSS, WHETHER DUE TO A DEATH,
        DIVORCE, OR SIMPLY A FALLING OUT.
  - T - TIRED.  BEING TIRED OR SLEEP DEPRIVED SERIOUSLY IMPEDES
        REACTION TIME, CONCENTRATION, MOOD, MEMORY, AND JUDGMENT.
        LIKE ALCOHOL, FATIGUE CAN CATCH US UNAWARE.  SLEEP
        DISTURBANCE OR DEFICIT HAS BEEN ASSOCIATED WITH SUICIDE AND
        OTHER UNSAFE ACTS.  LEADERS SHOULD NOT UNDERESTIMATE THE
        IMPORTANCE OF SLEEP IN MAINTAINING RESILIENCE.

9.  WE MUST BE ON GUARD AGAINST THE DISTORTED THINKING THAT "I HALT" STATES 
CAN CAUSE.

10. IT IS IMPORTANT TO UNDERSTAND HOW THESE FACTORS CAN AFFECT YOUR 
PERCEPTIONS AND ACTIONS, AND THOSE OF THE PEOPLE AROUND YOU.
WHEN YOU RECOGNIZE THAT "I HALT" FACTORS ARE IN PLACE, AVOID DANGEROUS 
ACTIVITIES, STARTING OR ENDING INTIMATE RELATIONSHIPS, AND ANY IRREVOCABLE 
DECISIONS.  TAKE TIME TO EAT, HYDRATE, REST, AND COOL DOWN; REACH OUT TO 
PEOPLE YOU TRUST.  IF YOUR THINKING IS TAKING YOU IN CIRCLES AND YOU ARE 
HAVING TROUBLE DEALING WITH YOUR PROBLEM, GET ANOTHER OPINION - A REALITY 
CHECK - FROM SOMEONE YOU TRUST OR CALL ONE OF THE SUPPORT RESOURCES LISTED 
BELOW.

11.  ADDITIONAL RESOURCES AND INFORMATION INCLUDE:
MILITARY ONESOURCE, 800-342-9647, WWW.MILITARYONESOURCE.COM; NATIONAL SUICIDE 
PREVENTION LIFELINE, 800-273-8255, WWW.SUICIDEPREVENTIONLIFELINE.ORG; AND NAVY 
SUICIDE PREVENTION, WWW.SUICIDE.NAVY.MIL.

12.  POINT OF CONTACT IS LCDR BONNIE CHAVEZ, OPNAV (N135F), AT (901) 874-
6613/DSN 882, OR VIA E-MAIL AT BONNIE.CHAVEZ(AT)NAVY.MIL.

13.  RELEASED BY VADM MARK FERGUSON, N1.  MINIMIZE CONSIDERED.//

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