Clear, safe, and consistent communication is important throughout community suicide prevention. As the Center for Disease Control and Prevention’s (CDC’s) comprehensive approach notes, you will need to communicate internally with your suicide prevention coalition partners and externally with other community leaders about your activities’ progress, successes, and lessons learned. You may also want to develop public education campaigns as part of your suicide prevention activities. To do each of these things, your group will need to create messages together that are safe and effective, i.e., ones that are appropriate for each audience; convey hope for recovery; and do not normalize, sensationalize, or stigmatize suicide.
Developing the skills to communicate well internally and externally takes time and resources from all local suicide prevention partners. Partners will need to do the following: