Developing a systemwide suicide postvention plan is a critical step for any organization, community, or school that wants to effectively respond to and prevent suicide. Suicide postvention refers to the actions taken after a suicide to support those impacted by the loss and to prevent additional suicides. A systemwide plan ensures that everyone in the organization or community is aware of their role in responding to suicide, and that resources and protocols are in place to provide immediate and ongoing support to those affected. This webpage provides guidance and resources for developing a comprehensive and effective suicide postvention plan that can be adapted to meet the unique needs of your school, organization or community.
Whether the person that dies by suicide is a member of a school, a sports team, a church, a workplace or another organization or community, the organization or community will be greatly affected. It is important for every entity to develop a plan about what it will do in the event someone in their organization dies by suicide.
A postvention plan is a plan that outlines the steps and resources that will be used to support individuals and communities affected by a suicide or suicide attempt. Here are some things to consider when creating a postvention plan:
Identification of key stakeholders: Identify the key individuals and groups that will be involved in the postvention plan, such as family members, friends, colleagues, mental health professionals, and community organizations.
Communication plan: Develop a clear and comprehensive communication plan that outlines how information will be shared with those affected by the suicide or suicide attempt. This plan should include information about how to access support services and resources.
Mental health support: Ensure that individuals and groups affected by the suicide or suicide attempt have access to mental health support services, such as counseling or therapy.
Training and education: Provide training and education to key stakeholders on how to identify warning signs of suicide, how to provide support, and how to access resources.
Collaborative partnerships: Establish collaborative partnerships with local mental health organizations and community groups to provide support and resources to those affected by the suicide or suicide attempt.
Confidentiality and privacy: Ensure that confidentiality and privacy are respected when sharing information about the suicide or suicide attempt, and provide guidance on how to respect the privacy of those affected.
Evaluation: Establish an evaluation process to measure the effectiveness of the postvention plan and make any necessary adjustments to improve its effectiveness.
By considering these factors when creating a postvention plan, you can help ensure that individuals and communities affected by suicide or suicide attempts receive the support they need to recover and move forward.
If you or someone you know is having a mental health crisis, call or text Crisis Hotline 988.