Rising Suicides Among Black Residents of Cook County

The Chicago Sun-Times interviewed Matt Lawson on the alarming increase in suicides among Black residents of Cook County. (Check out the full interview here):

“Within the first month of George Floyd happening, that conversation became very front and center,” says Matt Lawson, a counselor at Chicago Compass Counseling. “That conversation has led into a lot of other things that speak to some unspoken trauma. A lot of people in the Black community deal with this sense that we kind of carry around a burden or a sense that there’s something out there trying to get us.”

Sherry Molock, an associate professor of clinical psychology at George Washington University, says that with the pandemic and financial insecurity caused by the ravaged economy: “We’re all watching this, getting scared. In the Black community, [suicide] was already increasing a bit. And this is like another layer of stress.”

Sean Joe, a professor of social work who focuses on Black suicidology at Washington University in St. Louis, says it will take a few years to know the full impact of the stresses on Black communities.

“People are so preoccupied now,” Joe says, “that the emotional trauma they’re experiencing is kind of blunted.

“That wave is coming. It’s just too much unattended grief that’s happening.”

Read the full article on the Chicago Sun-Times.

Sarah Suzuki, AM, LCSW, CADC

Sarah Suzuki, AM, LCSW, CADC

Hi, I'm Sarah, and I'm a counselor who helps high-achieving men learn how to moderate their drinking. I currently offer counseling services and corporate training here at Chicago Compass Counseling. If you're interested, you can read more about me on my about page.