Suicide Threat or Attempt

If someone threatens suicide or manifests other self-destructive behaviors, a student, faculty or staff member's reaction and responsiveness could result in a positive crisis resolution. Successful intervention involves establishing a supportive relationship with the individual. A University employee is not liable for a breach of confidence when action is taken on behalf of a student whose behavior may be harmful to him/her or others. Counseling services are provided on-campus through the Counseling Center (909-748-8108) for students and through Human Resources (909-748-8040) for employees.

Warning Signs
Please note that many of these warning signs are signs of depression. Depression does not necessarily mean that a person is contemplating suicide, but depressed people often think of suicide. There are non-verbal and verbal warning signs that may suggest one is contemplating suicide.

  • Giving away personal or prized possessions.

  • Making a will or putting other affairs in order.

  • Increased alcohol or drug use.

  • Sleeping too much or too little.

  • Change in eating pattern.

  • Lack of interest in personal appearance.

  • Lack of interest in friends; withdrawing from others.

  • Lack of interest in social activities that were formerly of interest.

  • Poor performance in school.

  • Boredom, restlessness, and loss of concentration.

  • Suddenly happier or calmer-person feels relief in knowing problems will soon be over.

  • Preoccupation with death.

  • Taking unnecessary risks.

  • Visiting or calling people one cares about.

  • Statements about hopelessness, helplessness, or worthlessness.

Verbal warning signs may include such statements as:

  • "Instructors, classmates, family, and friends don't care."

  • "Lately I've been driving my car like I really don't care what happens."

  • "I've been saving up my pills in case things get really bad."

  • "People are better off without me."

  • "Everything seems to be going wrong."

  • "I don't need this any more."

  • "Life isn't worthwhile."

Ways to help a person who may be suicidal:

  • Talk openly and freely and ask direct questions about the individual's intention.

  • Listen to what is said and treat it seriously.

  • Do not argue, debate, or lecture about whether or not suicide is right or wrong.

  • Do not swear to secrecy.

  • Do not offer platitudes or simple answers.

  • Do not challenge the individual or use scare tactics.

  • Do not leave the individual alone.

  • Get help for the individual by contacting the following:
    For students contact the Counseling Center (909-748-8108).
    For employees contact Human Resources (909-748-8040).
    After hours contact Public Safety (909-748-8888).

  • Follow the instructions from counseling services or Public Safety and wait for a representative to arrive and/or accompany the individual to their location. Professional assistance will be determined by qualified professionals.

If someone threatens or attempts to commit suicide:

  • If someone threatens to commit suicide notify Public Safety (909-748-8888). If someone has attempted suicide, immediately call 911.

  • DO NOT LEAVE the person alone.

  • Try to remove the individual calmly but firmly from immediate means of hurting him/herself.

  • If the individual has a weapon, do not try to take it physically or through force. Alert emergency responders.

  • Keep the area off limits and isolated until Public Safety, emergency medical personnel and/or police arrive.

  • Render first aid, if necessary.

  • Witnesses should be directed to stay in the area in case police or emergency services personnel need further information.