Suicide continues to grow as a public health issue in Wisconsin. Among state residents, the suicide rate increased by 40% from 2000-2017. This is an issue associated with tremendous loss that affects individuals, families, and communities across the state. Suicide is also a complex issue, as it involves many factors that can increase the risk of suicidal thoughts and behaviors. Such risk factors include mental health and substance use issues, financial difficulties, physical illness, social isolation, childhood and historical trauma, and ease of access to the methods people use in suicide attempts. These risks can be decreased and suicide can be prevented, though support is needed to help inform prevention efforts in the state.
Suicide in Wisconsin: Impact and Response seeks to help inform efforts through a two-part report. By first presenting in-depth data, stakeholders will gain insight about the people and populations in Wisconsin who experience self-harm injuries, as well as suicidal thoughts, behaviors, deaths, and associated risk factors. The report then presents the Wisconsin Suicide Prevention Plan, a comprehensive approach to reduce suicide attempts and deaths. Suicide in Wisconsin: Impact and Response updates two previous reports, The Burden of Suicide (2014) and the Wisconsin Suicide Prevention Strategy (2015).
The Wisconsin Suicide Prevention Plan was produced in collaboration with the Prevent Suicide Wisconsin Steering Committee. Prevent Suicide Wisconsin is a statewide public-private partnership that was formed over a decade ago when stakeholders identified the need to create an umbrella organization for suicide prevention efforts in Wisconsin.