OSHA, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration in the US Department of Labor, has created a resource to aid in the prevention of suicide. “Suicide Prevention: 5 Things You Should Know” is a five-point, downloadable poster outlining tips for workers at every workplace to keep in mind. The tips are:
1. BE AWARE
Everyone can help prevent suicide. Mental health and suicide can be difficult to talk about — especially with work colleagues — but your actions can make a difference. When you work closely with others, you may sense when something is wrong.
2. PAY ATTENTION
Know the warning signs of suicide. There is no single cause for suicide, but there are warning signs. Changes in behavior, mood or even what they say may signal someone is at risk. Take these signs seriously. It could save a life.
3. REACH OUT
Ask “Are you OK?” If you are concerned about a coworker, talk with them privately, and listen without judgment. Encourage them to reach out to your Employee Assistance Program (EAP), the human resources (HR) department or a mental health professional.
4. TAKE ACTION
If someone is in crisis, stay with them and get help. If you believe a coworker is at immediate risk of suicide, stay with them until you can get further help. Contact emergency services or the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline.
5. LEARN MORE
Suicide prevention resources are available:
Call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 800.273.TALK (8255), or text “TALK” to 741741.
Visit the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention (www.afsp.org) to learn more about suicide risk factors, warning signs and what you can do to help prevent suicide.
Download the poster at https://www.osha.gov/sites/default/files/publications/OSHA4180.pdf (English version) and https://www.osha.gov/sites/default/files/publications/OSHA4181.pdf (Spanish version).
For more information, visit www.osha.gov/preventingsuicides.