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CapRadio health care reporter Sammy Caiola is spending six months exploring the high rate of suicide in Amador County and how residents are trying to tackle it.
Like neighboring Calaveras and Mariposa counties — and other rural places throughout Northern California — residents here are at greater risk for suicide than their urban peers. Her project will delve into why people take their own lives, and what solutions might help.
Through personal stories from people directly affected and conversations with those working on prevention, she discovers why those experiencing depression, anxiety, addiction, isolation and other challenges associated with rural living often suffer in silence.
If you or someone you know needs help, call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-8255. Additional resources for those in Amador County and beyond, including programs for youth, seniors, veterans and Native Americans, can be found here.
This project is funded by a USC Annenberg Center for Health Journalism grant.
September 24, 2018
The event marked the close of reporter Sammy’s Caiola's series on suicide prevention, but many attendees expressed hope that it was the beginning of a broader commitment — not just to reducing the suicide rate, but bringing it to zero.
September 21, 2018 | Sammy Caiola
Six months ago, CapRadio’s Sammy Caiola set out to learn more about who dies by suicide in rural California, particularly Amador County. Here, we look at where our data came from and what they reveal about the problem.
September 17, 2018
Suicide is a difficult topic. A big part of confronting the problem is talking about it. This conversation kit can help.
September 13, 2018 | Sammy Caiola
Amador County residents and social service providers say there’s a serious lack of services and awareness around mental illness in the community. They’re planning to use a special cache of leftover state funding to solve the problem.
September 12, 2018 | Sammy Caiola
It’s a health issue that presents a threat of early death equal to obesity. One-third of all people who took their lives in Amador County between 2010 and 2017 were over age 60.
September 11, 2018 | Sammy Caiola
Many young people say they don’t have a healthy way to express feelings of being trapped and misunderstood. And teens who live in remote places are more likely to seek a fatal escape.
September 10, 2018 | Sammy Caiola
Amador has the third-highest suicide rate of any county in California — about three times the state average and the top 20 counties on the list are some of the most remote and least populous places in the state.
September 9, 2018 | Linnea Edmeier
Our decision to spend nearly a year on the topic of rural suicide came after we learned that Amador County, with a population of less than 40,000, has the third-highest suicide rate in the state.
September 6, 2018 | Sammy Caiola
For a long time, Amador County has had culture of silence around suicide. There’s a growing coalition of residents trying to break it, in hopes of convincing friends, family and neighbors to get help. Here are some of the people who are speaking up.
September 4, 2018 | Sammy Caiola
These crimes cause a huge ripple through communities, and are often just the tip of the iceberg for deeper problems in broken families.