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How Idaho And Other Mountain West Communities Are Tackling Suicide

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Heath Druzin
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Boise State Public Radio
Hank Thornton makes the rounds in Benewah County, Idaho, where he checks on veterans to see if they need services like food assistance and medical treatment. He also looks for signs of suicide risk and offers resources and an ear when needed.

States in the Mountain West have some of the highest suicide rates in the country. The public radio collaboration Guns & America has been looking into how states including Idaho, Colorado, Wyoming and Utah are approaching this urgent issue. 

Guns & America reporters Heath Druzin and Leigh Paterson join Idaho Matters to share more on their series "In Their Own Hands." Their reports looked at the role firearms play in this public health crisis, the politics around measures to address this issue, and what's being done to protect folks in rural parts of the West. 

If you or someone you know is struggling, there is help. Call 208-398-4357 to talk with a trained professional at the Idaho Suicide Prevention Hotline. You don't have to be suicidal to call.

As COVID-19 cases spread through the U.S. and Idaho, we’re committed to keeping you updated and informed. You can get updated info on cases, closures and how to stay healthy at any time on our Coronavirus news blog.

Have a question or comment for the show? Tweet @KBSX915 using #IdahoMatters

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Frankie Barnhill is the Senior Producer of Idaho Matters, Boise State Public Radio's daily show and podcast. She's always interested in hearing surprising and enlightening stories about life in the West. Have an idea for Idaho Matters? Drop her a line!