Fairfield schools discuss warning signs of suicide to parents as another suicide impacts district
Following another suicide at Warde High School, Fairfield schools are reaching out to parents to show them the warning signs.
Teen suicides are up in Connecticut, but there is help available. The state just passed three new mental health laws. Starting next year, most insurance plans will cover two evaluations a year, with no pre-authorization or co-pay required. And for low-income parents, the state will cover treatment that insurance doesn't.
Schools will also get more psychologists, but an expert says the first line of defense is parents and friends.
"The mental health field can't handle this crisis. We're not going to be able to get us out of this crisis alone," said Dr. Alison Roy.
This week's suicide is not the first one at Fairfield Warde. Last year, another student took his life, and his parents turned that loss into action.
They founded a group called Kevin's Afterglow, to teach parents and kids the warning signs.
Parents in Fairfield heard from Roy Thursday. She's been working with the school district for the last three years.
Roy says Fairfield schools are training teachers and staff to help students open up.
"Fairfield has done an amazing job. They're one of my exemplary districts that I work with across New England, really embracing this concept of what we call 'trauma informed schools.' And really being able to adjust the way an educator is in a classroom," said Roy.
Kevin's Afterglow is also trying to get more people to become child therapists, since Connecticut has a shortage of them.
The new crisis line 988 is now up and running for anyone who may need help.