NYC health officials: Black youth suicide rate growing

The New York City suicide prevention services says suicide rates of black youths are the highest growing statistic.

The New York City suicide prevention services says suicide rates of black youths are the highest growing statistic. (8/19/16)

NEW YORK - New York City’s suicide prevention services say suicide rates of black adolescent males are the highest growing statistic.  

Although black suicide rates are the lowest in the country, more black boys ages 5 to 11 committed suicide between 1993 to 1997 and 2008 to 2012, according to Jama Pediatrics. 

Through his experience, Brett Scudder, president of the NYC Suicide Council says he is able to work with minority youth dealing with mental health issue, but says there is resistance. 

"The biggest challenge we have now is not to get the help to the people because the help is there,” he says. "I'm saying to our minorities, young and old: don't be afraid, don't be ashamed. I am a suicide attempt survivor I struggled with depression, I struggle with PTSD."

A report by the Health and Human Services Office of Minority Health says only a quarter of African-Americans seek mental health care, compared to 40 percent of whites because they don't trust it or they simply can't afford it.  

The NYC Suicide Council provides workshops dealing with depression and trauma, emotional wellness support groups for men in the Bronx, and behavioral health forums for children. 

More on this topic

Scudder Intervention Services

NYC Suicide Council

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