THARINGER AND VAN DE WEGE DISCUSS LOCAL SUICIDES
Hundreds joined Representatives Steve Tharinger and Kevin Van De Wege on a telephone town hall meeting Wednesday night. During this call, a Grays Harbor resident asked the representatives about the recent string of teen suicides locally.
Tharinger called the incidents “…very, very tragic.” and spoke of the 1/10th of one percent funding available to the county for mental health that Grays Harbor has taken advantage of. Grays Harbor County Commissioners approved the tax last year as a way of providing relief to the court and corrections system that was over burdened and ill equipped to provide treatment to the people the newly formed Dependency/Therapeutic Court Fund.
Van De Wege said it was a “disturbing issue” but commended Grays Harbor to take steps to get funding to prevent the problems facing local youth.
In October of last year, Pacific County Commissioners also considered a sales tax increase to pay for mental health and substance abuse programs.
In the 2011 Coroner’s Report, Coroner Dan Burns said that despite the added public attention to suicides locally, 2011 saw a drop in the suicide rate through the coroner’s office, and a drop in the 5 year average.
Locally, a group called ‘Prevent Teen Suicide in Grays Harbor’ has scheduled a meeting Thursday night starting at 6pm at Aberdeen High School. The meeting is free and open to anyone interested. For more information you can visit their page on Facebook.