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    New guide: Suicide prevention and two-spirited people

    The National Aboriginal Health Organization (NAHO) released a new suicide prevention guide yesterday on suicide prevention and two-spirited people. In its release, NAHO states that while suicide rates among two-spirited, gay, lesbian, bisexual, and transgender First Nations and Aboriginal persons is not known, “the rates of related risk factors in these groups indicate that the suicide risk is greater than among heterosexual First Nations.” The guide is designed to address these risks.
    In the release, NAHO Acting CEO Simon Brascoup√© is quoted saying, “Two-spirited people were accepted in First Nations communities prior to European contact…Since then there has been a sense that being two-spirited is wrong, resulting in them feeling marginalized and increasingly alienated, sometimes resulting in suicide. This guide is a reminder of the values that First Nations culture is based upon, such as inclusiveness and diversity.”
    NAHO developed the guide to “make what we know about suicide prevention and two-spiritedness more accessible. When people know more, they can do more.” The guide both educates and provides concrete advice to health professionals, service providers, the public, and the two-spirit community about suicide and prevention.
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