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Jun 25, 2015

Tester: We must do more to address the youth suicide epidemic in Indian Country

(U.S. Senate)-Senator Jon Tester, Vice-Chairman of the Indian Affairs Committee, today held a committee hearing on efforts to prevent youth suicide in Indian Country.

During the hearing, Tester heard from administration and tribal leaders about the lack of resources accessible to Native American youth struggling with mental health issues.

"Unfortunately, this year it seems like Congress can provide more spending for Defense budgets, but we can't put more resources towards saving the lives of native youth," Tester said. "To say that this is troubling doesn't even begin to characterize the situation."

Native Americans have the highest suicide rate of any ethnic group in the United States, and Native American youth commit suicide at twice the rate of their non-Native peers.

Currently, IHS only employs 0.44 mental health providers per 100,000 Native American youths and only 1.3 percent of the total clinical service budget for IHS is allocated for mental health services.

Earlier this month the Senate passed two Tester-backed bills that will increase safety and provide additional resources for children in Indian Country.

Office Contact Information

Senator Tester's Montana staff serves the state from offices in Billings, Bozeman, Butte, Great Falls, Helena, Kalispell, and Missoula. Please bring your concerns with federal agencies, academy nominations, and other situations to one of these Montana offices.


Judge Jameson Federal Building
2900 4th Ave N, Suite 201
Billings, MT 59101
Phone: (406) 252-0550
Fax: (406) 252-7768


Avant Courier Building
1 E Main Street, Suite 202
Bozeman, MT 59715
Phone: (406) 586-4450
Fax: (406) 586-7647


Silver Bow Center
125 W Granite, Suite 200
Butte, MT 59701
Phone: (406) 723-3277
Fax: (406) 782-4717

Great Falls

119 1st Avenue N, Suite 102
Great Falls, MT 59401
Phone: (406) 452-9585
Fax: (406) 452-9586


208 North Montana Avenue
Suite 104
Helena, MT 59601
Phone: (406) 449-5401
Fax: (406) 449-5462


8 Third Street E
Kalispell, MT 59901
Phone: (406) 257-3360
Fax: (406) 257-3974


130 W Front St.
Missoula, MT 59802
Phone: (406) 728-3003
Fax: (406) 728-2193

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