Two weeks ago, a producer for Good Morning America caused a ripple in the Suicide Prevention community but asking members of the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention to remove their signage and step aside because it was the top of their morning show and they didn’t “want suicide on the brain.”
This stirred a lot of emotion in people passionate about our mission to #StopSuicide, but the reality is, suicide is a difficult topic. That’s what makes our work so important and, at times, difficult. It’s also why it is so rewarding when people with a large platform welcome our message with open arms.
That is what happened last week, when I was asked to appear on Kansas City Live to speak about my experience and what we can do to raise awareness.
The host, Michelle Davidson, and producers of the show not only gave me a segment to speak about suicide prevention and mental health awareness, they chatted with me about it before and after the show. If we are really going to break down the stigmas around suicide and mental illness, we need allies in a position to help us get the message out.
It’s easy to criticize the Good Morning America producer who silenced the message, but I’d much rather thank Kansas City Live and others who enthusiastically join the cause. That’s how we change perception and save lives.