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September 12, 2018

Suicide is the third leading cause of death for New Jersey residents between the ages of 15 and 34. That sobering fact is highlighted in a proclamation that Gov. Phil Murphy signed when declaring this Suicide Prevention Week (September 9 to 15).

Suicide is the fourth leading cause of death for New Jerseyans in the 35-44 age group, and 14th leading cause of death overall in the state. Although the suicide rate here dropped 13 percent in 2016, 689 residents died by suicide that year — 11 percent higher than 10 years ago, with the highest rate among those in the 45-64 age group.

The aim of Suicide Prevention Week is to encourage residents to learn the warning signs and risk factors and find help for themselves or their loved ones. In concert with the week, the New Jersey Division of Mental Health and Addiction Services (DMHAS) will hold its fourth annual suicide prevention conference tomorrow at the War Memorial in Trenton, where the focus will be on community efforts to prevent suicide.

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