Weekly Social Marketing Sighting by Nancy R. Lee
President, Social Marketing Services, Inc.
Affiliate Instructor, University of Washington
Strategic Advisor, C+C
Social Issue: Gun Suicide Deaths
Social Marketing Strategy: Providing Anonymous Tips When Warning Signs
Where Sighted: CNN Website
“Anonymous reporting systems used by schoolchildren to report concerning behavior among their peers has resulted in the prevention of numerous instances of suicide, school violence and planned attacks, according to a study published Wednesday.
Researchers studied data from the Say Something Anonymous Reporting System, operated by the violence prevention group Sandy Hook Promise, which includes an around-the-clock crisis center staffed by trained counselors who review tips submitted by phone and online and notify appropriate responders. The study, published in the journal Pediatrics, was funded by the Chaiken Foundation and the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, and its lead authors were affiliated with the University of Michigan and Sandy Hook Promise.
In a review of tips submitted from 2019 to 2023 in one southeastern state, the researchers found that the anonymous reporting system “enabled 1,039 confirmed mental health interventions; 109 ‘saves’ where clear evidence of imminent suicide crisis was present and averted; prevented 38 acts of school-violence including weapons recovered on school grounds; and averted 6 confirmed planned school attacks,” according to the report.”