Teen suicide bill

The following is a copy of a press release issued today in Augusta.


Today the Maine Senate unanimously supported the enactment of a measure aimed at preventing suicide among youth in Maine.

LD 609, sponsored by Representative Paul Gilbert (D-Jay) requires suicide prevention awareness for all school personnel and advanced training that includes prevention education for some employees.

“Awareness and training will and does save lives,” said Senator Colleen Lachowicz (D-Waterville) who also works as a licensed social worker. “Too many of our communities have suffered the loss of suicide and it is too much for our communities to bear. Passing this measure is important to the families in our state.”

Suicide is the second leading cause of death of Mainers 24 and younger, according to the Maine Suicide Prevention Program, an initiative of several state agencies. Survey data from the state Center for Disease Control reveals that nearly 13 percent of high school seniors in Maine seriously considered suicide, more than 9 percent planned their suicide and almost 8 percent attempted suicide.

“During the public hearing, we heard from many courageous parents and siblings who came forth to tell their story. As lawmakers we owe to them and all Maine families to do everything we can to bring awareness and prevention to this issue,” said Senator Rebecca Millett (D-Cape Elizabeth). “I am proud of the work the legislature did on this issue. It was emotional. It was heartfelt and it is critically important.”

The measure will now go to the Governor’s desk for his signature.

Stolen Vehicles and Foot Chase in Dexter

DEXTER - A man, who allegedly stole three vehicles, crashed one of them and attempted to break into multiple residences in Dexter on Thursday morning.

Auction For High School Parties Set For Friday

Millinocket - More than a hundred items will be up for auction Friday so high school kids will have safe parties when the school year winds down.  Stearns High School's Project Graduation is again raising money for what it calls chemical-free parites on prom night and grad night.  The items will be on display at the Stearns library center Friday at 5:30 p.m. and the auction begins at six.  Organizers hope to raise five-thousand dollars for safe, supervised, all-night events.

Measles Risk At UMaine

Orono - Students and faculty at the University of Maine need to watch for measles symptoms.  The Maine Center for Disease Control says an out-of-state visitor to UMaine last week had the highly contagious disease while on campus.  The CDC says.  Symptoms include coughing, runny nose and red watery eyes, followed by a red, blotchy rash that starts on the face and spreads to the rest of the body.  The CDC says anyone who was on the campus in Orono on April 16th should watch for symptoms through May 8th.

EMCC Goes "Sweet" For American Cancer Society

Bangor - Students and faculty at Eastern Maine Community College are doing their best to make life sweet for the American Cancer Society.  They put on a chocolate tasting event Wednesday to raise money for the Penobscot County Relay for Life.  EMCC's relay team will take turns walking the track at the University of Maine all night long in late May.  The Relay for Life raises money for cancer research and treatment.

Bangor School Committee Recognizes PTO Members

BANGOR - The Bangor School Committee took a step back from the budget topic tonight to recognize several of the elementary school Parent Teacher Organization (PTO) members.

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