“SURVIVING AND THRIVING IN TURBULENT TIMES”

An annual conference to help those journeying with people with mental illness

Friday, August 27
9 a.m. – 4 p.m.
Hosted by the National Shrine of Our Lady of the Snows – Victorious Missionaries
Registration Cost: $40 (lunch included)
IL CEUs (for mental health professionals): $35 (additional fee)

Illinois Continuing Education Units Offered for Attendance
4.75 CEUs: LCSW, LCPC, APRN, RN, LPN

For more information, contact 618-394-6281 or email programs@snows.org


KEYNOTE PRESENTER: Dr. Bart Andrews, PhD
Morning Keynote Presentation:

Bart Andrews

Bart Andrews, PhD

MAKING THE PIECES FIT: UNDERSTANDING SUICIDE FROM A SOCIO-CULTURAL LENS

Have you heard that 90% of Americans who die from suicide had a severe mental illness? Do you know where that stat comes from? What if I told you this was not only untrue, but a harmful view of suicide and those fighting it? The fact is that culture and community play a much larger role in suicide than mental illness and “mental illness” is much more a reflection of socio-cultural factors than biological determinism. It is time we start talking about what is wrong with the world around us and why so many people don’t feel like they have lives worth living. It is time we talk about the real problems and what we can do about it.

Afternoon Keynote Presentation:
SOCIAL MEDIA AND SUICIDE: THE DANGER OF GETTING SCIENTIFIC INFORMATION FROM THE NEWS

You’ve probably heard at some point that social media and screen time are making our youth depressed and suicidal. You have even heard that you should limit your children’s “screen time” and that it will improve their wellness and reduce their risk. NONE OF THIS IS TRUE. There are some complicated relationships between screen time and wellness and some interesting associations between social media use and suicide in young women, but none of it suggests a causal relationship. This presentation will review the research we have on social media, screen time and emotional wellness and discuss the need to avoid moral panic while taking a reasonable approach to managing youth social media use.

Bart Andrews, PhD, is the Chief Clinical Officer at Behavioral Health Response. Dr. Andrews is the Chair of Missouri’s Suicide Prevention Network, member of the Suicide Lifeline’s Standards, Training and Practices committee, a member of the Suicide Prevention Resource Center’s (SPRC) Steering Committee, a ZeroSuicide Academy Faculty member and lead facilitator for Missouri’s Suicide Prevention in Healthcare ECHO. Dr. Andrews is a suicide attempt survivor and a proponent of embracing lived expertise in our suicide prevention efforts.


Additional Morning Presentation:
SUICIDE: WHY ARE THE MIDDLE-AGED AT RISK AND WHAT CAN BE DONE?

Olivia Johnson

Dr. Olivia Johnson

Deaths by suicide nationwide from 2000-2016 rose 30 percent (APA, 2019). In the decade, rates rose 23 percent in Illinois alone (Behcon). There is no doubt time and money are being invested into this life-saving effort, but research shows that suicide awareness and prevention efforts do not lead to significant rates of decline (Jaffe, 2014). With that being said, “what can be done differently to reduce rates of suicide, and more specifically among the middle-aged? And where can we re-invest time and money to have the most impact?” First, it would be advantageous to identify those specific concerns and issues facing men and women of middle age e.g., physically, emotionally, psychologically, and spiritually). Second, educating healthcare providers, clinicians, and other professionals about these issues and providing meaningful ways for these professionals to engage with patients. Third, brining depression to the forefront. Depression is often under-reported especially among males. However, many are struggling and afraid to discuss this topic and the use of medication with health care providers. In addition, providing guidance to health care providers to help reduce the stigma and shame that often accompanies these mental health concerns. Providing current research about patient hesitancy and fear will help enlighten the medical community, while more adequately serving their communities.

Dr. Olivia Johnson is a subject expert in police suicide and prevention and recently received the Law Enforcement Psychological Autopsy Certification from the American Association of Suicidology. She holds a master’s in Criminology and Criminal Justice from the University of Missouri, St. Louis and a doctorate in Organizational Leadership Management from the University of Phoenix. Dr. Johnson is founder of the Blue Wall Institute, an Air Force veteran, former police officer, and published author. She belongs to numerous professional organizations and Boards. Dr. Johnson served as an Advisory Board member for VALOR Officer Safety and Wellness Program regarding curriculum review for de-escalation training and techniques. She formerly worked as a Senior Research Associate for the Institute for Intergovernmental Research as a Lead Instructor for the VALOR Officer Safety Program and was the Program Advisor and Lead Instructor for the Suicide Awareness for Law Enforcement Officers (SAFLEO) Program

For more information, contact 618-394-6281 or email programs@snows.org

2021 Sponsors
Chestnut Health Systems
National Shrine of Our Lady of the Snows – Victorious Missionaries
St. Clair County Mental Health Board