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K-State Today

September 14, 2018

Annual Security Report: More than federal compliance

Submitted by K-State Clery Compliance

This Friday, Sept. 14, as part of our recognition of National Campus Safety Awareness Month, we are looking at elements related to health and well-being covered in the Annual Security Report, known as the Clery Report.

Suicide is the second-leading cause of death in college students. It also is one of the most preventable forms of death. Because suicides and nonfatal suicide attempts have direct, profound, costly and emotionally damaging effects on the entire community, we strive to prevent both by educating K-State community members about suicide prevention strategies.

By understanding the risk factors and learning how to interact with someone who may be suicidal, suicide may be prevented. Ninety percent of individuals who complete suicide demonstrate some type of warning sign they are considering taking their own life.

Warning signs for suicide include suicidal thoughts or comments, such as:

  • "People would be better off without me."
  • "I can't live like this anymore."
  • "I might as well be dead."

Behavioral cues, such as:

  • Purchasing a gun or stockpiling pills.
  • Giving away money or prized possessions.
  • Dramatic change in behavior, feelings of hopelessness, or uncontrolled anger.
  • Acting reckless or engaging in risky activities, seemingly without thinking.
  • Increased alcohol or drug use.
  • Withdrawing from friends, family and society, or expressing no reason for living or no sense of purpose in life.
  • Themes of death in conversation or other communication, including social media and texts.
  • Prior suicide attempts.

Observing any of these warning signs in yourself or someone you know means it's crucial to get help. Asking someone if they are considering suicide does not increase the risk of them taking action. Research has shown that once a person has been asked about suicide, they experience relief, not distress. Once the question has been asked, fully listen to what that person has to say and take steps to persuade them to get help. You may ask the individual any of the following:

  • Will you go with me to see a counselor?
  • Will you let me help you make an appointment with a counselor/doctor/etc.? If you or someone you know is experiencing thoughts of suicide, consult with a mental health professional. Resources on campus include University Counseling Services, the Family Center, or Employee Assistant Program.

Additionally, while the majority of students come to college already having some experience with alcohol, certain aspects of college life such as the widespread availability of alcohol and limited interactions with parents and other adults, can exacerbate problematic behaviors. About one in four college students report academic consequences from drinking, including missing class, falling behind in class, doing poorly on exams or papers, and receiving lower grades overall.

However, harmful drinking is not just a student problem, and routinely affects faculty and staff alike. Alcohol and drug abuse are serious issues on almost all college campuses, and it is important to be aware of the signs of substance abuse and the resources available to help.

Signs of alcohol poisoning:

  • Passed out or difficult to wake.
  • Cold, clammy, pale or bluish skin.
  • Slowed breathing.
  • Vomiting while asleep or awake.

Know how to help:

  • Turn a vomiting person on his or her side to prevent choking.
  • Keep the person awake.
  • Never leave the person unattended.
  • Never be afraid to get the help an individual needs. Call 911 or K-State police at 785-532-6412.

K-State's Lifeline 911 policy
It's important that victims of alcohol-related emergencies receive medical treatment as soon as possible. The Lifeline 911 policy means that K-State students who seek immediate medical assistance for an alcohol-related emergency on behalf of themselves or another person will not be sanctioned for violation of any university alcohol-related policies. This policy allows students to make healthy decisions by seeking medical help without the fear of punishment.

Additional information regarding general well-being, academic well-being, and individual well-being may be found in for each campus in their respective report.

Annual Security and Fire Safety Reports (Clery Reports)

Any questions regarding the Report It webpage or Clery Act compliance in general may be directed to Sarah F. Barrett, coordinator of Clery Act federal compliance, at ksuclery@k-state.edu.

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