Jason Flatt Act Signed By Governor Beebe
Losing a child for any reason is a parents' worst nightmare. On July 16, 1997, Jason Flatt's family found themselves in unimaginable pain. Sixteen year old Jason, a good student and athlete, bright and fun-loving, took his own life.
Why does any seemingly happy, well-adjusted teen choose to end their life? What causes a child to be in such a hopeless state that he/she cannot see beyond that darkness? How could this happen to any family? All are haunting feelings experienced by many families who have lost a child to suicide.
Youth suicide, called the “silent epidemic,” claims the lives of approximately 5,000 American youth every year. Suicide is the third leading cause of death among youth, ages 10-24. According to Mental Health America, 8 out of 10 people considering suicide give some sign of their intentions. If we are educated to recognize the warning signs, this means that we have an opportunity to intervene in 80% of these suicides. Suicide is preventable.
Governor Mike Beebe signed the Jason Flatt Act into law March 30, 2011. This law requires two hours of suicide prevention and awareness training for every educator every five years.