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Washington state proposes cutting funding to youth suicide prevention program

Staff Reports

SEATTLE — Officials in Washington state are considering eliminating funding for the state’s Youth Suicide Prevention Program (YSPP), reported the Seattle Gay News.


Each week in Washington state, an average of two young people die by suicide and another 17 suicide attempts result in hospitalization, according to Vicki Wagner, executive director for Washington state’s Youth Suicide Prevention Program (YSPP).

“And yet, our state government is proposing to cut off all funding to the organization.”

“Over the years, Washington state has gradually decreased YSPP funding from an original $500,000 a year to only $116,000,” said Wagner. “In spite of this reduction, YSPP has continued to provide critical youth suicide prevention efforts statewide. But now, our state government is proposing cutting our funding to zero.”

The SGN reports that more than one in every 10 Washington state high school students reported having attempted suicide, nearly one in four (between 20-25 percent) have seriously considered it, over 30 percent of LGBTQ youth report at least one suicide attempt within the last year, more than 50 percent of transgender youth will have had at least one suicide attempt by their 20th birthday, and youth suicides outnumber youth homicides.

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