Suicide – it’s a word loaded with emotion, tragedy and questions.
Until recent years it was a word seldom heard in the news media.
Now it’s something that people talk about and is no longer “hidden behind a curtain.”
The evolution of how the news media covers not just suicide, but mental illness in general, was the topic I was invited to explore on the MindVine Podcast with Ontario Shores staff.
The discussion made me realize just how far we have come since I started out as a journalist almost 20 years ago.
It also made me realize we still have a long way to go.
Ontario Shores communications officers Chris Bovie and Darryl Mathers asked pointed questions about whether journalists have a deep enough understanding of mental illness to cover the issues properly.
We also tackled the complexity of mental health and the criminal justice system.
The media coverage is improving by leaps and bounds thanks to those individuals who are brave enough to speak out despite any stigma.
The more personal stories the public hears, the more they will understand and hopefully any stigma that remains will slowly drop away.