CNY mental health experts getting calls about Netflix series

The Netflix series"13 Reasons Why" tackles many potential issues in schools like bullying, rape and suicide.

The series is about a teenager's suicide and the 13 tapes she leaves behind explaining why she took her own life.

A local suicide prevention organization, Contact Community Services, is taking the opportunity of the series' growing popularity to get the word out about how Central New Yorkers can get help with mental health issues.

Mental health is an around the clock business for Contact Community Services in East Syracuse.

People needing a counselor can call the center at any time.

Lately, administrators said they are getting more calls about the Netflix show "13 Reasons Why."

"We are seeing callers who are calling with concerns specifically about the show. Whether they be young people who have been struggling or maybe have had previous thoughts of suicide, or maybe previous attempts or maybe just a concern," Cheryl Giarrusso,director of crisis intervention services program at Contact Community Services, said.

The Centers for Disease Control calls "youth Suicide" a "serious public health problem" and experts from around the country have come out to say the Netflix show does not help.

"These negative re-enforcements aren't going to make things any better, and a person who is struggling in a dark, dark place, really needs something more positive, needs hope because without hope we lose life," Giarrusso said.

Contact Community Services' focus is on suicide prevention and mental health support.

Giarrusso said thoughts of suicide are more common that we think, but in the U.S. mental illness carries a stigma, so it is rarely discussed.

She said if there is one positive about the show, it is shining a light on the topic.

"Let's talk about it. It's okay to talk about it because that's really the only way you're going to address the issue," Giarrusso said.

close video ad
Unmutetoggle ad audio on off