Populations and Settings

Champions challenge and lead health and behavioral health care systems to improve the care provided for individuals at risk for suicide.

Native American and Alaska Native

Horse, Native American woman

Suicide rates are up to three times higher among Indigenous Native American and Alaska Native people than among any other racial or ethnic group in the United States. Sovereignty, community control or autonomy, cultural identification, language, spirituality, healing ways, kinship models, and family connectedness are all important protective factors in addressing high rates of suicide among Indigenous populations.

An understanding that Indigenous people are not a homogenous group should be one of the most important drivers to consider for health and behavioral health care programs and services promoting suicide-safe care in Native American and Alaska Native communities. Screening, treatment and follow-up interventions should be designed based on the specific issues affecting each group of interest. They should be culturally-relevant, involve the most appropriate community Elders, Traditional Healers, and other important people, and consider factors such as attitudes toward death and suicide, mental health and substance use challenges and help-seeking behavior.  

See featured resources and search for others specific to Native American and Alaska Native people below.

For more in-depth information and resources, check out our new supplementary toolkit Best and Promising Practices for the Implementation of Zero Suicide in Indian Country.

Features
Resources 11 - 15 of 21

The Puyallup Tribal Health Authority developed a caring letter template that includes caring phrases in the Puyallup language with English translations. These culturally...

The Chickasaw Nation has shared sample caring contact cards that include a message in the Chickasaw language. Youth and adult examples are included.

American Indian/Alaska Native (AI/AN) populations are at higher risk for suicide than other ethnic and racial groups, with youth and young adults being particularly at risk....

The Zero Suicide Workforce Survey contains skills and knowledge-based queries for providing suicide-safer care based on the Zero Suicide framework for health and...

11 steps for getting started with Zero Suicide for those working in Tribal and IHS-led systems.

Pages

SPRC and the National Action Alliance for Suicide Prevention are able to make this web site available thanks to support from Universal Health Services (UHS) and the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA), U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) (grant 1 U79 SM0559945).

No official endorsement by SAMHSA, DHHS, or UHS for the information on this web site is intended or should be inferred.