Brainerd Community Starts Conversation On Suicide Prevention
It’s been over a month since the tragic shooting at Bill’s Gun Range in Baxter where a 77-year-old Brainerd man took his own life. Since then, law enforcement and community resources have been working to address and promote suicide prevention, especially in a community where gun violence typically involves suicide rather than homicide.
Baxter Police Chief Jim Exsted says that suicide rates are up, not just in Crow Wing County, but in the state and even the entire country as well.
Mary Marana, the executive director of the Crisis Line and Referral Services in the Brainerd Lakes area, says people can call the crisis line if they are having suicidal thoughts, going through a crisis, or during a difficult situation before it becomes a crisis. The crisis line is an important resource in an area with some of the highest suicide rates in the state of Minnesota.
As for how we can help as a community, Marana says we need to educate ourselves.
The Crisis Line and Referral Service offers training on how to listen to and communicate with a person with suicidal thoughts. Their website can be found here.
The number for the Crisis Line is 218-828-4357 or 800-462-5525.