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Bridging the Divide 2017

Bridging the Divide 2017

Join the Movement: Aspiring Toward Zero Suicide in Colorado


May 18-19, 2017
Venue: Lowry Conference Center, 1061 Akron Way, Denver, CO 80230


Registration is now FULL for BtD 2017.  

If you have already registered for the conference you can still purchase box lunch or CE credits. 

To do so, click here.

NOTE: This year's conference format has changed from one and a half days, with a half day of pre-conference workshops to a full day of pre-conference workshops and two days of conference.

Aspiring Toward Zero: Implementing Comprehensive Suicide Prevention

What Does Lived Experience Have to do with Suicide Prevention

How I Went from Wanting to Die to Loving Life: A Resilience Journey

Peer Support and Suicide Prevention in the Workplace and Law Enforcement

Richard McKeon, Ph.D., M.P.H., Chief of Suicide Prevention Branch CMHS

There is currently an unprecedented focus on suicide prevention in the United States. Yet the suicide rate in the United States continues to rise. While there is unprecedented activity, many of these efforts are fragmented and disconnected. A comprehensive approach to suicide prevention is required which includes a strong health care component (such as Zero Suicide) and a strong community component. These activities are best. Implemented simultaneously to maximize synergistic effects. This presentation will highlight the evidence, components, and resources available for comprehensive suicide prevention.

Ursula Whiteside, Ph.D, CEO NowMattersNow.org and Clinical Faculty at University of Washington

The field of suicide prevention has changed dramatically in the past few years due to the inclusion of those who have had suicidal experiences - or those with lived experience. This presentation describes a ground-breaking project, NowMattersNow.org, funded by the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention and the National Institute of Mental Health. NowMattersNow.org brings the voices of those with lived experience to life by sharing their success stories and evidence-based strategies for managing suicidal thoughts. Providing and sharing easily accessible resources is a form of social justice. NowMattersNow.org is a public resource for those struggling with suicidal thoughts, as well as clinicians, family members, friends wanting to support them. The tool provides resources for those wanting to learn long term ways to manage suicidal thoughts and negative emotions. 

Leah Harris, M.A. Peer Integration Strategist, National Association of State Mental Health Directors (NASMHPD) Trainer and consultant, National Center for Trauma-Informed Care (NCTIC)

Leah Harris spent much of her adolescence wanting to die. She will share about the critical turning point that propelled her from being a suicidal and hopeless young woman to an empowered advocate living a meaningful life in recovery. She’ll discuss what it has been like to “come out” publicly as a suicide attempt survivor, and her interest in promoting trauma-informed approaches to suicide prevention and care. She will discuss the legacy of intergenerational trauma, mental illness, and addiction in her Ashkenazi Jewish family and how she has broken the cycle of silence and shame through her life and work. Leah will also share what she has discovered about resilience and healing from traumatic experience on the mind-body-spirit levels, as well as through the creative and expressive arts.

Lt. John Coppedge, Denver Police Department 

Law Enforcement as a profession has, much like other male dominated professions, experienced a high suicide rate.  Officers are generally more resilient than members of the public they serve.  However, the repeated exposure to trauma, coupled with a negative work environment, and a culture that says you do not ask for help, create a cumulative effect that leads to an elevated rate of suicide.  A comprehensive, and administratively supported, peer support program coupled with competent mental health oversight has proven to be an effective strategy to combat the high risk of suicide found in the profession.  A successful peer support program requires sound clinical oversight by psychologist that understand the workplace culture they are serving.  Additionally, the selection of the right peers to act as counselors is important.  John will present information on how to identify the right personnel to act as peer counselors.  His presentation will detail the importance of confidentiality, that is imbedded in policy, in building a program that employees will utilize and trust.  


Please join us for the 2017 Bridging the Divide: Suicide Awareness and Prevention Summit on May 18-19, 2017, in Denver, where we will explore the theme, “Join the Movement:  Aspiring Toward Zero Suicide in Colorado.”  This state-wide conference, hosted by the Suicide Prevention Coalition of Colorado (SPCC), will examine promising evidence-based practices that decrease the likelihood that suicide will occur, assist those who struggle with suicidal thinking, and help survivors of suicide loss regain their equilibrium following a loved one’s suicide attempt or death.

Breakout sessions at the 2017 Bridging the Divide Summit will provide opportunities to learn about new developments and best practices through the Clinicians/Peer Supporter, Programs that Work, Research and People with Lived Experience with Suicide tracks.

Find out about the Continuing Education credits from the University of Denver here.












Interested in becoming a sponsor of the 2017 Bridging the Divide. Click here for more information on Sponsorship opportunities.


P.O. Box 17614

Boulder, CO 80308

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