State Representative Marlene Anielski (R-Walton Hills) recently participated in the “Out of the Darkness” Walk for Suicide Awareness.

The three-mile walk took place on Saturday morning with students, families and faculty from Hiram College, as well as our four-legged friends.  The walk was partnered with the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention (AFSP). The walk raised awareness about depression and suicide and seeks to provide a support for those who have lost a loved one. Before the walk, Rep. Anielski spoke to the crowd about the need to reduce stigma, get education on warning signs, and how to be a friend to others who may be struggling. The representative also highlighted the legislation that has become law to bring suicide awareness and prevention to the state.

“I want to thank the organizers for continuing to bring awareness to prevention. The walk helps to address a critically important issue that far too many families have to face,” said Rep. Anielski. “We need to focus on prevention and bring to light more ways to cope with depression, bullying, and mental illness. Suicide is treatable and a preventable cause of death.”

In its 2011 Youth Risk Behavioral Report for Ohio, the Center for Disease Control reported that one in seven Ohio students said they had “seriously considered suicide” in the past 12 months. Slightly more than one in seven had actually “made a plan to commit suicide” in that time. Additionally, one in 11 Ohio students reported “attempting suicide one or more times in the past 12 months,” nearly 50 percent higher than the national average.

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