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Lehigh commissioners discuss suicide statistics

September is Suicide Awareness Month and Sept. 10 was Suicide Awareness Day.

Lehigh County Coroner Daniel Buglio addressed the Lehigh County Commissioners, highlighting the hard facts of an issue, which still has much stigma in society.

According to Buglio, as of Sept. 13, his office has investigated 34 suicides in the county so far for 2023.

“Suicide is one of the leading causes of death in the United States. It’s the second cause of death in the world for those aged between 15 and 24 years old. On average, one person commits suicide every 11 minutes. Two-thirds of those who commit suicide suffer from depression,” Buglio said.

Commissioner Zach Cole-Borghi, who has been personally affected by suicide, spoke to the issue, saying, “It costs zero dollars to be nice to somebody. You never know what somebody is dealing with or what somebody is going through.

“So, if you have a chance to treat somebody with kindness and compassion, even though you can see they are going through a rough time, you never know what that will do to them to do this.”

Also at the meeting, Operation Green Light will take place Nov. 6 to 11. Operation Green Light shows support for veterans by lighting buildings green. By shining a green light, county governments and residents let veterans know they are seen, appreciated and supported.