My Advocacy Program: LGBT Teens and Suicide Risk

Paper Type:  Essay
Pages:  5
Wordcount:  1316 Words
Date:  2022-06-24


My Advocacy program relies on the findings of previous researches which indicate that the Gays, lesbians, transgenders, and the bisexual have elevated risks of engaging in suicide (Thomson, 2018). My program suggests that there is a need to focus on the high-risk sections of the teenagers as a way of fighting teen suicide cases. The gifted and the bullied constitute the rest of the most vulnerable group in committing teen suicide (Milstead & Short, 2017).

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My advocacy campaign focuses on the high-risk groups. They have the highest rates of vulnerability to suicide ("Centers for Disease Control and Prevention," 2018). The campaign aims at achieving success in eliminating teenage suicide by focusing on the high-risk groups as they constitute an overwhelming majority which engages in adolescent suicide.

The Need for Legislative Change to Implement the Bill

The bill would require an introduction of a new law obligating institutions to send the data about the numbers of the gays, lesbians, the transgenders, and the bisexuals to the authorities. The advocacy campaign focuses on the communities and institutions such as schools. These are the first contact points where one can detect signs of depression which is one of the significant causes of teen suicide (Young Minds Advocacy, n.d.). Thus, there is a need to encourage individual States to enact laws to ensure that each school has at least a part-time professional counselor or psychologist.

Additionally, the proposal requires public training on suicide awareness. Publication of suicide awareness leads to the detection of early signs of suicide. Such knowledge helps as the general public can easily report to the professionals who can help with the case.

Specific Changes Needed on Jamie’s Laws on Teenage Suicide Prevention

The teenage suicide prevention laws appear ineffective as there is a recent increase in the adolescent suicide despite the implementation of Jamie's laws by around 35 States in the country (Jamie's Law, n.d). The Jamie's law requires amendment on the following areas.

Article II of Jamie's law addresses the need to create suicide prevention and awareness programs (Jamie's Law, n.d). However, the article only indicates that the teachers and school administrators have the role of disseminating suicide awareness information to the students. However, it is evident that the report also needs to involve parents who share great deals of time with the students during the holidays. A sizeable number of teenage suicides occur when they are out of school and thus including the parents on the list can create a great resource to minimize cases of teenage suicide (Thomson, 2018). Therefore, it is essential to train the parents too on the early signs of adolescent suicide awareness.

The Jamie's law does not indicate there is a specific group with high vulnerability to the teenage suicide among the teenagers. My advocacy approach shows the gays, bisexuals, transgenders, and the lesbians as the most vulnerable groups to teenage suicide attempts. Thus, the amendment needs to reveal such critical information intending on creating a special task force with the aim of focusing on the unique needs of the most vulnerable groups.

Obstacles Within the Legislative Process

The advocacy efforts could face numerous obstacles during the legislative process. It is difficult to land such a bill on the house of the Congress. There is the need for the intervention of the people's representatives though it is difficult to access and communicate with them.

At the same time, the bill can face opposition as some of the legislators can argue it is efficient to operate by modifying or amending the existing laws relating to the teenage suicide in the United States. Many legislators can say that there are similar advocacy programs. Thus, the advocacy program represents a duplication of the possible legislation. At the same time, others can oppose it due to the high cost of training the teachers and parents on early suicide awareness. Additionally, other legislators can resist such a scheme on the thought that there is no practical way of enhancing suicide awareness among the teenagers.

Using the “Three Legs” Advocacy Lobbying Approach

The three legs advocacy lobbying approach represents one of the most useful approaches in enhancing the enactment of bills into law ("Advocacy Institute," 2014). The first leg represents the need to create public awareness about the need for the new law. Though there are relatively few persons die as a result of teen suicide, it affects a greater number in the society ("Advocacy Institute," 2014). It is essential to inform the public that one case of teen suicide has negative implications for a family, the sad memories of the classmates, and it is a lost talent. Additionally, the society needs to understand that teen suicide is a deadly trend which has a tremendous negative impact on the well-being of the community.

Engaging the media represents another essential part of the "three legs" advocacy lobbying process ("Advocacy Institute," 2014). One step is the creation of a social media page on issues relating to teenage suicide. I would later transfer the issues raised to the public through forums and the interaction with the national media houses. Such an approach can increase the overall push to create an opportunity for the realization of the need for the enactment of the bill into law. The fact that the society is suffering, the specificity of the Bill on the target persons in suicide death prevention, and the fact that the current laws do not provide an efficient solution as the cases of teenage suicide continue to increase outlines the aspects that can inspire the enactment of the bill into law.

How to Influence the Legislators to Support the Bill and Table It in the Legislative Assemblies Through the Social and the Mainstream Media

It is difficult to meet and convince the political representatives about the bill. However, the media has great power in informing and influencing the political opinions and decisions in any country. On the one hand, one needs credible information to back up the claims made reflecting the need for the introduction of new laws to prevent teenage suicide ("Advocacy Institute," 2014). I would offer the information on all deaths emerging from teenage suicide cases. Supporting such information with the research reflecting the signs seen by the people who live with the deceased teens certainly indicate that the early suicide prevention programs can work effectively.

There is a need to have an emotional and logical appeal to the masses on the matter. Publishing such information can easily create traffic where the people discuss it on social media platforms ("Advocacy Institute," 2014). I would tag politicians into such debates to ensure that they see the peoples' sentiments, the inefficacy of Jamie's law due to the rising cases of teenage suicide, and thus support the urge for a new bill.

The society perceives issues best when compared with other aspects. I would reflect the data on the highest causes of teenage deaths and include the impact of teenage suicide. However, it is important to indicate that the teenage suicide cases represent a preventable cause of death. Thus, effective legislative can prevent such deaths. Such an approach can lead to the great public discussion and hence attract the interest of the legislature.


Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. (2018, June 7). Retrieved June 19, 2018, from Suicide rates rising across the U.S.:

Flores, A. (2018). The Effectiveness of Therapy in the Public School System. Advocacy Institute. (2014, April 7): Three Elements of an Effective Program. Retrieved from

Jamie's Law, (2001) "HB 2535 Text." Retrieved from

Milstead, J. A., & Short, N. M. (2017). Health Policy and Politics. Jones & Bartlett Learning.

Thomson, J. D. (2018). Depression and Suicide in Teens Today. PUBLISHER'S PAGE, 37.

Young Minds Advocacy. (n.d.). Retrieved June 22, 2018, from

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My Advocacy Program: LGBT Teens and Suicide Risk. (2022, Jun 24). Retrieved from

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