Alternatives to Suicide

Alternatives to Suicide

Caroline White

System responses to people who share thoughts or experiences about suicide often involve pathologization, coercion and force. Since 2008, psychiatric survivors at the Western Mass Recovery Learning Community have been holding alternative supportive spaces that embody a different set of values. "Alternatives to Suicide" groups make no assumptions of illness and focus on creating connection and making meaning rather than controlling behavior. Come learn what makes these groups a unique and valuable resource for protecting the dignity and human rights of people experiencing despair, hopelessness, and other states of being.

Goals and objectives

  1. Participants will be able to identify through survivor narratives and statistics the human rights concerns in current implementations of suicide prevention models.

  2. Participants will be able to name at least three elements to the "Alternatives to Suicide" approach (e.g., partnering, transparency, and community).

  3. Participants will learn strategies for advocating for more effective supports for folks experiencing thoughts or experiences around suicide in their communities.

Link to brief presenter bio: Caroline White