NEW YORK STATE ASSEMBLY MEMORANDUM IN SUPPORT OF LEGISLATION submitted in accordance with Assembly Rule III, Sec 1(f)
BILL NUMBER: A3210A
SPONSOR: Ortiz (MS)
TITLE OF BILL:
An act to require the office of mental health to develop educational
materials for educators regarding suicide prevention
PURPOSE OR GENERAL IDEA OF BILL:
The purpose of this bill is to provide information from the Office of
Mental Health (OMH) on depression and suicide prevention to educators
affiliated with any New York State university, community college, or
SUMMARY OF SPECIFIC PROVISIONS:
Section 1 of the bill would require the commissioner of the Office of
Mental Health (OMH) to consult with the commissioner of the Department
of Education on the distribution of educational materials, in electronic
or other format, to be used by educators on suicide prevention measures,
and signs of depression from students attending any New York State
university, community college, or city university.
Suicide can have a tremendous impact on colleges and universities, lead-
ing to profound grief among peers, faculty, and staff. Campuses must be
prepared to address these consequences. There not only is need for a
prevention and intervention program in place, but there must be a post-
vention plan in partnership with a behavioral health provider in the
community. A postvention is an intervention conducted after a suicide,
largely taking the form of support for bereaved family, friends, profes-
sionals and peers. Family and friends of the suicide victim may be at
increased risk of suicide themselves.
With the rise of opioid use and addiction, most commonly found in
college age individuals, according to the New England Journal of Medi-
cine Many opioid overdose deaths may actually be suicides. A person with
opioid abuse issues who is suicidal needs different treatment than one
who is not suicidal
Data from the National Vital Statistics System, Mortality shows that
from 1999 through 2014, the age-adjusted suicide rate in the United
States increased 24%, from 10.5 to 13.0 per 100,000 populations, with
the pace of increase greater after 2006. Suicide rates increased from
1999 through 2014 for both males and females and for all ages 10-74.
The percent increase in suicide rates for females was greatest for those
aged 10-14, and for males, those aged 45-64.
The most frequent suicide method in 2014 for males involved the use of
firearms (55.4%), while poisoning was the most frequent method for
females (34.1%). Percentages of suicides attributable to suffocation
increased for both sexes between 1999 and 2014.
Suicide is an important public health issue involving psychological,
biological, and societal factors. After a period of nearly consistent
decline in suicide rates in the United States from 1986 through 1999,
suicide rates have increased almost steadily from 1999 through 2014.
While suicide among adolescents and young adults is increasing and among
the leading causes of death for those demographic groups, suicide among
middle-aged adults is also rising.
PRIOR LEGISLATIVE HISTORY:
2011/12: A. 5167 Advanced to third reading, cal. 550
2013/14: A. 5870 Referred to Mental Health
2015/16: A. 6187 Referred to Mental Health
2017/18: A. 3210-A amended and Referred to Mental Health
To be determined
STATE OF NEW YORK
2017-2018 Regular Sessions
January 27, 2017
Introduced by M. of A. ORTIZ, ABINANTI, WEPRIN, JENNE, JAFFEE, SKOUFIS,
STIRPE, O'DONNELL, GALEF, BLAKE, McDONALD -- Multi-Sponsored by -- M.
of A. BARCLAY -- read once and referred to the Committee on Mental
Health -- recommitted to the Committee on Mental Health in accordance
with Assembly Rule 3, sec. 2 -- committee discharged, bill amended,
ordered reprinted as amended and recommitted to said committee
AN ACT to require the office of mental health to develop educational
materials for educators regarding suicide prevention
The People of the State of New York, represented in Senate and Assem-bly, do enact as follows:
1 Section 1. The commissioner of the office of mental health, in consul-
2 tation with the commissioner of the department of education, shall
3 provide and publish, in electronic or other format, educational materi-
4 als for any New York state university or community college, or a city
5 university, regarding suicide prevention measures and signs of
6 depression among students attending such university or community
7 college, or a city university. Such educational materials shall include,
8 but not be limited to, information regarding symptoms of depression, how
9 depression manifests itself in different cultures, warning signs of
10 suicide, actions to take once a student is identified as at risk of
11 suicide, and a list of educational websites regarding suicide and
12 students attending a university or college. Such educational materials
13 shall be made available to the faculty and staff or any New York state
14 university or community college, or a city university, through the offi-
15 cial website of the office of mental health and by any other means
16 deemed appropriate by the commissioner of the office of mental health
17 within ninety days of the effective date of this act.
18 § 2. This act shall take effect immediately.
EXPLANATION--Matter in italics (underscored) is new; matter in brackets
 is old law to be omitted.