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Lagana, Giblin & Danielsen Bill to Help Prevent Student Suicides on College Campuses Advanced by Assembly Committee

(TRENTON) – Legislation Assembly Democrats Joseph Lagana, Tom Giblin and Joe Danielsen sponsored to help prevent student suicides at college campuses was advanced Thursday by the Assembly Higher Education Committee.
The bill (A-1613) is entitled the Madison Holleran Suicide Prevention Act.
Madison Holleran, a track star at Northern Highlands Regional High School in Allendale, committed suicide in January 2014 while enrolled at the University of Pennsylvania.
According to the 2013 Youth Suicide Report issued by the New Jersey Department of Children and Families, suicide is the third-leading cause of death for New Jersey youth ages 10-24. The most recent data for 2010-2012 shows that of the 233 youth suicides in New Jersey, 72 percent were committed by young adults ages 19-24.
“We cannot ignore this deeply concerning plague,” said Lagana (D-Bergen/Passaic). “With this simple step, we can hopefully help quell this trend and get young people the help they need. We cannot stand idle and accept this status quo.”
“We need to do more,” said Giblin (D-Essex/Passaic). “We’ve lost too many young people already. We need to put a focus on reducing student suicides and attempted suicides.”
“This isn’t a concern that takes time off, so neither should the services we need to prevent more tragedies,” said Danielsen (D-Somerset/Middlesex). “This is a caring approach designed to provide young people with the proper care. This is a must.”
The bill requires an institution of higher education to have licensed health care professionals with training and experience in mental health issues who focus on reducing student suicides and attempted suicides available on campus for students 24 hours a day, seven days a week.
The licensed health care professionals will also work with faculty and staff on ways to recognize the warning signs and risk factors associated with student suicide.
Under the bill, no later than 15 days following the beginning of each semester, an institution must transmit to each student via electronic mail, the location and contact information of the licensed health care professionals.