Suicide Prevention Programs Authorized under the Garrett Lee Smith Memorial Act Receive Full Funding - December 2006

Final action on the Labor, HHS, Education Appropriations conference report was completed on December 21st and the President signed the bill into law on the 30th of that same month.

Within this bill, Congress made an amazing $27 million available for the Suicide Prevention Programs authorized under the Garrett Lee Smith Memorial Act. This funding was secured thanks to the behind the scenes work of Senator Gordon Smith (R-OR).

These funds will be available for a variety of suicide prevention initiatives that were authorized as part of the Garrett Lee Smith Memorial Act (P.L. 108-355) and which are administered by the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA). The Youth Interagency Research, Training, and Technical Assistance Centers will receive $4 million in FY'06. This center will provide information and resources for a wide array of activities such as research, evaluation, and data sharing on the topic of suicide in youth. The Suicide Prevention for Youth program, which provides resources to public organizations, private non-profits, consortia of States, and Indian tribes or tribal organizations for statewide youth suicide early intervention and prevention strategies, will receive $18 million. Visit the SAMSHA site for more information.

The Mental and Behavioral Health Services on Campus program will receive $5 million in FY'06. This represents a significant increase from the level of $1.5 approved in FY’05. As reported earlier, SAMHSA recently awarded grants to 22 institutions of higher education for this program. This program has its roots in the Campus Care and Counseling Act, legislation developed by APA and championed by Representatives Danny K. Davis (D-IL) and Tom Osborne (R-NE) as well as Senators Jack Reed (D-RI), Mike DeWine (R-OH), Hillary Clinton (D-NY) and Gordon Smith (R-OR) during the 108th Congress. APA has worked closely with these offices as well as the office to push for increased funding for the program.