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James Plastiras Director of Public Information New York State Office of Mental Health 518-474-6540 james.plastiras@omh.ny.gov

September 27, 2021

OMH Announces Funding to Support Suicide Loss Survivors in Warren and Washington Counties

The New York State Office of Mental Health today announced a grant to The Warren Washington County Suicide Coalition for the development of an evidence-based program designed to help suicide loss survivors. The grant will be used to establish a Local Outreach to Suicide Survivors (LOSS) team in the two-county region.

The goal of the county LOSS Team is to connect suicide loss survivors to a local suicide survivor groups and other healing resources immediately following a death by suicide. This is a targeted strategy designed for suicide prevention that ultimately helps all those impacted by a suicide loss.

To be eligible for LOSS Team funding, which is provided through OMH’s Suicide Prevention Center of NY (SPCNY) county coalition applicants had to identify an active suicide loss survivor group operating within and accessible to residents of the county, and the group must be specific to suicide loss with trained facilitators.

SPCNY will also support the startup, planning, and coordination of a Warren-Washington County LOSS team and will facilitate a series of two half-day trainings to qualifying coalitions and respective partners. The content of these trainings will discuss the basic framework necessary for developing and sustaining LOSS Team initiative. 

OMH Commissioner Dr. Ann Sullivan said, “Every suicide has a devastating impact on many people, and it is important for communities to come together and support each other losing a person to suicide.. Implementing a Loss Team in Warren and Washington counties is an important step towards supporting those who have recently lost someone to suicide by connecting them with suicide loss survivors who understand their pain and can help build a network of support and resiliency. We look forward to working with The Warren and Washington County Coalition to strengthen their community’s suicide prevention efforts.

Robert York, Director of Community Services for Warren and Washington Counties, said, “I am pleased that our community will have access to this vital resource. I applaud the Council for Prevention and the Suicide Prevention Center of New York for their suicide prevention efforts and for developing such important supports, like the LOSS Team, for families and loved ones who have experienced a suicide loss.”

Project Management and related funding will begin January 1, 2022.

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