South Dakota Indian reservation to end suicide outreach program due to funding problems

The only suicide prevention outreach program on a South Dakota Indian reservation where at least 15 people have killed themselves this year will end in December due to lack of funding.

Pine Ridge tribal spokesman Kevin Steele said Friday that the federal grant that funded the program wasn't being renewed due to a problem with the application.

The program has cost about $480,000 per year for three years. The money helped fund outreach workers responding to emergency suicide calls.

Pine Ridge legislative liaison Donna Salomon says the tribe will seek reconsideration on the funding, but has no backup plan for its suicide problem among young people on the reservation.