August 14, 2019

National Preparedness Month Is Coming 
September is National Preparedness Month (NPM), a time to promote family and community disaster and emergency planning. This year's overarching theme is "Prepared, Not Scared. Be Ready for Disasters." The goal is to increase the number of individuals, families and communities that engage in preparedness actions for a potential disaster or emergency.
This year, four weekly themes focus on disaster preparation.

  • Week 1: September 1-7
  • Week 2: September 8-14
  • Week 3: September 15-21
  • Week 4: September 22-30
Save Early for Disaster Costs
Make a Plan to Prepare for Disasters
Teach Youth to Prepare for Disasters
Get Involved in Your Community's Preparedness
The NPM toolkit provides various tips and information for use on your campus or in your community. Social media content and resources are available for each weekly theme and a list of hashtags, including #natlprep, #preparenow, and #youthprep, can be used across social media channels. Additional resources include:
  • Preparedness Videos: The Ready campaign's partnership with the Advertising Council created a wide variety of PSAs available in English and Spanish designed to educate and empower viewers to prepare for and respond to various emergencies including hurricanes, tornados, and earthquakes.
  • Emergency Preparedness Publications: These free publications can be ordered in print from the FEMA warehouse or downloaded in PDF. They include emergency preparedness information such as supply lists, information for pet owners, preparedness for people with disabilities, tribal communities, and response plans.
  • FEMA app : Download the app to stay up to date and receive information on disaster resources, weather alerts, and safety tips. Sign up for preparedness text messages by texting PREPARE to 43362 (4FEMA).
  • Ready Campus: Colleges and universities are key emergency management partners to federal, state, and local agencies as well as private and nonprofit organizations. Keeping emergency plans up to date is an important role in this partnership. Find resources including emergency planning information, all hazards guides to preparedness, training assistance, and disaster response and recovery.
Visitors to the NPM website can also find links to other information such as the 2019 National Seasonal Preparedness Messaging Calendar and Community Emergency Response Team (CERT), which includes information on Campus CERT and a starter guide. In addition, visit FEMA's Individual and Community Preparedness Division, which supports FEMA's mission by connecting individuals, organizations, and communities with research and tools to build and sustain capabilities to prepare for any disaster or emergency.
For more information about NPM or any Ready campaigns, please visit

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Engage Your Campus in Suicide Prevention

September is a busy time, filled with orientations, trainings, and national observances. One of the most important, in light of continuing research confirming the rising number of students struggling with anxiety and depression, is National Suicide Prevention Month (NSPM).
The National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI) was the first organization to dedicate the entire month of September to suicide prevention and awareness, building on the efforts of others such as the American Association of Suicidology, which originally sponsored National Suicide Prevention Week (September 8-14, 2019) and now also sponsors NSPM. NAMI uses NPSM and the entire year to share resources and stories in an effort to shed light on this stigmatized topic.
Suicide prevention efforts began in 1958, when funding from the U.S. Public Health Service allowed the first suicide prevention center to open in southern California. Twelve years later, the National Institute of Mental Health assembled a task force in Phoenix, AZ to discuss the status of suicide prevention in the country. Unfortunately, it wouldn't be until 2001 that the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) would create the country's first official program aimed at serving all U.S. persons at risk of suicide via local, certified crisis centers. In 2012, the Office of the U.S. Surgeon General and the National Action Alliance for Suicide Prevention developed the National Strategy for Suicide Prevention (the National Strategy). The National Strategy (PDF) is a call to action that is intended to guide suicide prevention actions in the U.S. over the next decade. It outlines four strategic directions with 13 goals and 60 objectives that are meant to work together in a synergistic way to prevent suicide in the U.S.  
According to the CDC, suicide rates have increased by 30% in more than half the U.S. states since 1999 and nearly 45,000 lives were lost to suicide in 2016 alone. Suicide is currently the second leading cause of death for those aged 10-34, the age group most heavily represented on college and university campuses. Campus prevention coordinators and other campus and student leaders can find suicide prevention resources in a variety of locations to use this September and throughout the year.
  • International Association for Suicide Prevention was established in 1960 and is the largest international organization dedicated to suicide prevention and to the alleviation of the effects of suicide. The association works annually to promote World Suicide Prevention Day on September 10.
  • National Action Alliance for Suicide Prevention(Action Alliance) is the nation's public-private partnership for suicide prevention. The Action Alliance works with more than 250 national partners to advance the National Strategy. Current priority areas include transforming health systems, transforming communities, and changing the conversation.
  • National Suicide Prevention Lifeline   1-800-273-TALK (8255) provides free, confidential emotional support and referrals to people in suicidal crisis or emotional distress, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week (SAMHSA-funded).
  • Suicide Prevention Resource Center (SPRC) is the only federally supported resource center devoted to advancing the implementation of the National Strategy. SPRC advances suicide prevention infrastructure and capacity building through consultation, training, and resources in states, Native settingscolleges and universities, health systems and other settings, and organizations that serve populations at risk for suicide.
  • Suicide Safe is SAMHSA's free suicide prevention app that helps health care providers, including campus providers, integrate suicide prevention strategies into their practice and address suicide risk among their patients. It includes patient and provider educational materials, a treatment locator, sample interactive cases, and conversation starters. 
You may also refer to more than 30 suicide-related publications and websites in our online library. Use the keyword "suicide" in your search. Additional Weekly Snapshot articles on suicide prevention, awareness, and contagion can be found by using the search term "suicide."

Professional Development Opportunities

Title: Suicide Prevention and Intervention for Public Safety Personnel
Organization: Justice Clearinghouse 
Date: September 3, 2019 
Location: Online
Fee: Free
Title: Using Evidence to Implement Real Change: Improving Campus Safety Practices
Organization: Clery Center 
Date: September 18, 2019
Location: Online
Fee: Free
Title: Major Event Planning  
Organization: Homeland Security Training Institute
Date: October 14, 2019 
Location: Glen Ellyn, IL    
Fee: Registration fee

For additional trainings and events, access our searchable online calendar

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This project was supported by Grant No. 2013-MU-BX-K011 awarded by the Bureau of Justice Assistance. The Bureau of Justice Assistance is a component of the Office of Justice Programs, which also includes the Bureau of Justice Statistics, the National Institute of Justice, the Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention, the Office for Victims of Crime, and the Office of Sex Offender Sentencing, Monitoring, Apprehending, Registering, and Tracking. Points of view or opinions in this document are those of author and do not necessarily represent the official position or policies of the US Department of Justice.
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