- Avoid saying “commit” or “committed” suicide. Using the word “commit” when referring to a suicide implies that the deceased is guilty of committing a crime or committing a sin. Replace the phrase “committed suicide” with “died by suicide” or “completed suicide.”
- When reporting on a suicide death, do not describe the method which someone died. Risk of additional suicides increases when the story explicitly describes the suicide method, uses dramatic/graphic headlines or images, and repeated/extensive coverage sensationalizes or glamorizes a death.
- When reporting on a suicide death, be sure to include risk factors of suicide, warning signs, trends in rates, and recent treatment advances. Always include national and local suicide prevention resources.
- Avoid reporting that death by suicide was preceded by a single event, such as a recent job loss, divorce, or bad grades. Reporting like this leaves the public with an overly simplistic and misleading understanding of suicide.
- When writing about suicide, be sure to include the suicide prevention hotline number (800.273.TALK) and other creditable suicide prevention resources.
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