Suicide is a serious public health problem and a leading cause of death and injury nationwide. It has also seriously and negatively impacted our town. In response, a broad-based coalition has been created to study the problem and make recommendations to the community.

The coalition plans to use this website to keep the public informed about our work, to provide a place for people to provide feedback or ask questions, and to inform people about resources.

Email the Coalition for more information.

Coalition Goals

As we begin our eighth year, the coalition continues with the integration of the national goals based on the U.S. Surgeon General's Call to Action to Prevent Suicide. Working within the fabric of the community, the coalition will reinforce the ability of families, schools, churches, and peer networks to help distressed individuals not to feel alone, to see options in their lives and to know they have a future. We have focused on the public health approach (based on scientific evidence) to prevent suicide and have continued to try to combine these methods with what we know about Needham's unique traits and values as a community.

  • Goal 1: Make the public aware that suicide is a public health problem that is preventable
  • Goal 2: Develop broad-based support for suicide prevention and related initiatives
  • Goal 3: Examine and utilize the body of research on suicide and suicide prevention
  • Goal 4: Implement evidence-based educational programs focusing on suicide prevention
  • Goal 5: Develop and implement strategies to reduce the stigma associated with discussing suicide and associated risk factors
  • Goal 6: Empower the community as a resource for suicide prevention and fostering supportive engagement in existing relationships
  • Goal 7: Improve news reporting (with a focus on education) and balanced portrayals of issues related to suicide in the media
  • Goal 8: Implement professional training programs that help gatekeepers and those who are in regular contact with persons at risk to recognize, refer and respond to suicidal behavior
  • Goal 9: Expand and improve systems to identify and collect data about those at risk
  • Goal 10: Reduce access to lethal means and methods of self-harm
  • Goal 11: Develop effective immediate and ongoing guidelines for school and community responses to deaths by suicide.
  • Goal 12: Document and report progress of the coalition