Sending Office: Honorable Donald S. Beyer, Jr.
September: Suicide Prevention Awareness Month
Cosponsors: Katko, Napolitano
Endorsing Organizations: American Foundation for Suicide Prevention, American Association of Suicidology, Trust for America’s Health, The JED Foundation, American Psychological Association, Mental Health America
I write to invite you to join me as a cosponsor of the Barriers to Suicide Act.
Suicide is the tenth leading cause of death in the United States and suicide rates have risen by about 33 percent since 1999. Between 2008 and 2018, 8,108 Americans lost their lives through suicide-by-jumping. Data shows that restricting access to lethal
means allows people to move out of fatal moments of crisis. One effective measure to prevent suicide-by-jumping is the construction of barriers or nets on bridges.
The most widely-known example of this type of project is the one being installed on the Golden Gate Bridge in San Francisco – a hotspot for jumping deaths. However, most states and localities face difficulty in providing adequate funding for barriers and
nets to prevent suicide deaths on bridges.
The Barriers to Suicide Act would establish a competitive grant program for states and localities to apply for federal funding to build safety nets and barriers on bridges with the goal of preventing suicides. This legislation would make these types of projects
eligible under two existing grant programs, the Surface Transportation Block Grant and the National Highway Performance Program. It would also authorize a substantive federal study to look at other types of structures that attract high numbers of suicide-by-jumping
deaths, types of nets and barriers that are effective at those locations, and other methods of reducing these types of death by suicide.
To cosponsor or for more information, please contact Grace Rubinger of my staff at 5-4376 or
Donald S. Beyer Jr.
e-Dear Colleague version 2.0