Reshaping the Conversation About Aging to Reduce Suicide (1.5 hours)
Time & Location
About the event
Suicide at any age is heartbreaking. Among older adults, it is also a major public health issue with those 85+ having the second highest rate of suicide. However, suicide in older adult populations is often unrecognized or undervalued for its severity. Concepts such as "burden" or suicide as a rational choice due to loss or age increase suicide risk. In this workshop, we will challenge these perceptions and create a framework for aging that will improve prevention efforts and reduce risk. We will also focus on the impact of social isolation, discrimination and COVID 19 may have on suicide prevention efforts.
Track: Older Adults, Persons with Disabilities, Supervisory/Management
HUD Category: The Aging Process (Statutorily Required Training Area)
Presenter: Mary Curlew, LICSW, Community Education and Training Specialist for Older Adults at Jewish Family & Children's Service
Presenter Bio: Mary Curlew, LICSW, is the Community Education and Training Specialist for Services for Older Adults at Jewish Family & Children’s Service, Waltham, MA. She is a Mental Health and Housing team member through JF&CS providing training and consultation for staff and residents in independent senior housing and related agencies. Mary has over 20 years’ experience providing mental health services and training in a variety of settings. Her specialties include trauma informed care, older adult behavioral health, caregiver support and holistic approaches to health care. Mary is a graduate of Boston College’s Graduate School of Social Work and has advanced training in EMDR, CBT, DBT and mindfulness.Objectives
- Examine ways discrimination based on age, race, gender identity and sexual orientation impact the behavioral health and suicide rates of older adults.
- Offer support for reframing suicide prevention efforts in our communities to include the real experiences of older adults and address both the risk factors and opportunities evident in this population, especially in light of COVID 19 concerns.
- Present prevention efforts already established to stimulate conversation and ideas about ways to respond to prevent suicide among older adults.