Updated: September 2022
Author: Injury and Violence Prevention Program, Vermont Department of Health
In 2019, the percentage of adolescents who made a suicide plan in the past year was 13%, which follows an increasing trend since 2011. The data is collected from the Youth Risk Behavior Survey (YRBS) which is administered every other year. For more data on suicide mortality and self-harm morbidity, please visit our injury surveillance reports.
Suicide is the second leading cause of death for people age 15 to 34 in Vermont. For every suicide death, there are many other people who think about or attempt suicide. While the causes vary and are complex, suicide is preventable.
Beyond this statewide number, we also know that the percentage varies between different subpopulations and tells a more complex story. Two populations with significantly high rates of suicidal thoughts or behaviors are youth of color and youth who identify as LGBTQ+.
Thirty-six percent of youth who identify as lesbian, gay, bisexual, or transgender (LGBT) made a suicide plan in the past year, which is significantly higher than heterosexual/cisgender youth (9%). Seventeen percent of youth of color made a suicide plan in the past year, which is significantly higher than their white, non-Hispanic peers (13%). Youth who hold marginalized identities may be at higher risk for suicide because of how they are mistreated and stigmatized in society.
The Vermont Departments of Health and Mental Health are collaborating with community partners to reduce these rates. One Agency cannot turn the curve alone; there are many partners who have a role to play making a difference.