The Daily Tar Heel

Serving the students and the University community since 1893

Monday May 10th

Policy for suicidal students isn’t really ‘voluntary’ at all

TO THE EDITOR:

The Daily Tar Heel recently published an article on the University’s policy about suicidal students (College students struggle with alcohol, suicidal thoughts,” Sept. 2).

Campus Wellness Services stated that it recommends “voluntary time away from school.”

But the Emergency Evaluation and Action Committee Policy states: “The committee shall consider whether the student’s behavior and other facts of the case indicate that the student poses a danger to himself/herself and whether the immediacy of the danger is so great that emergency action should be taken.

If the committee agrees that emergency action is warranted, it shall summarily impose an indefinite medical suspension on the student or take other appropriate action to minimize the risk, including referral of the student, on an emergency basis, to the Counseling and Wellness Services Office for assessment.”

Does that sound voluntary? Isn’t removing suicidal students from school, their friends, and possibly their campus job, likely to increase their depression?

I feel that the facts about this policy need to be made public.


Jodi Mills
Circulation Supervisor
Undergraduate Library

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