September 18, 2020
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  National Leaders in the Mental Health Aspects
of Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities
Friday Feature
September is National Suicide Awareness and Prevention Month
Suicide is a topic that is often difficult to talk about even among mental health professionals. As is relates to people with IDD, the discussions are sometimes missing altogether. Historically, there has been a tendency to believe that somehow ‘IDD’ itself is a protective factor in some way. We know this is not true from our experiences working with people through START. We are aware that people with IDD experience many of the risk factors associated with suicide and often are missing some of the protective factors. As START expanded into California, the initial data from our intakes suggested a higher rate of suicidal ideation and suicidal behavior in the population being referred to START in California than we have seen previously in other states. Do people with IDD in California have higher rates or are other places not screening for suicidality or missing the signs and symptoms? These and other questions will be explored. 

Here are two things to consider today:
  • There is a growing body of research showing high rates of suicidal actions and suicide in people with IDD.
  • Suicide is largely preventable with the right interventions, awareness, education, and action.
Knowing these two things should move us toward action. Today’s National Online Training Series presentation focused on strategies for addressing suicidal ideation in people with IDD. The START Clinical Director Practice Group had a presentation on the topic at their last meeting and will be following up with more discussion. Some of the teams in California have formed a task force to further explore how to address the needs. We will all learn from each other as we work with systems to raise awareness about suicide in IDD, reduce risk factors, and increase protective factors and resilience. 

2021 Virtual SNTI

The next START National Training Institute (SNTI) will be held virtually 
Monday May 3rd - Wednesday May 5th, 2021

Please mark your calendars, we hope you will be able to join us.

If you would like to share or revisit any of the Virtual 2020 SNTI program, all presentations were recorded and are available on our website:

Welcome Rhode Island

Earlier this week, the State of Rhode Island announced that they will soon be developing START clinical team services. Welcome Rhode Island!

Welcome Oklahoma

25 professionals from various roles within the Oklahoma child welfare system have joined together to engage in a 26-session, year-long virtual training program that totals over 69 contact hours of training on the mental health aspects of IDD. The group had their first session on September 2nd. The course is facilitated by Dr. Karen Weigle, CSS Associate Director and Beth Grosso, CSS Training Coordinator. As part of their year-long participation, training group members will be paired into learning partners that will work together closely to develop a 20-minute presentation/project to present at the end of the year. Each participant will leave the course with an improved knowledge and understanding of MH/IDD-specific topics and will be equipped with multiple sets of materials for engaging with their communities and thus building cross-systems capacity.
CSS is thrilled to host such a committed, innovative, and multidisciplinary group and look forward to working together to build capacity and strengthen the Oklahoma child welfare system for children with IDD-MH and their families. Welcome!

Job Opportunities at CSS
Job Opportunities at the Center for START Services
Two new opportunities to join the Center for START Services team are now available. Use the links below to learn more and apply.
Additional Opportunities
Each year TASH, an international leader in disability advocacy, celebrates those who have made history in the disability field, and who have worked tirelessly in the legal field for equity, opportunity, and inclusion for people with disabilities. TASH is pleased to announce the fourth annual Outstanding Leadership in Disability Law VIRTUAL Symposium and Award Celebration, on Wednesday, October 7, 2020.

A half-day legal symposium will explore Inclusion as a Human and Civil Right: Past, Present, and Future Legal and Advocacy Implications followed by an award celebration honoring Judith Gran for her exceptional leadership in disability law.

Details: Wednesday, October 7, 2020 - Virtual Platform (Registration Required)
Agenda: 1:00-5:00 PM ET: Legal Symposium, 7:00-8:30 PM ET: Award Celebration

To learn more about Judith, purchase a sponsorship and/or program advertisement, and register for the event, visit:\gran
Have a safe and healthy weekend,

The Center for START Services

Copyright © 2020 Center for START Services, All rights reserved.

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Institute on Disability at the University of New Hampshire