Foster youth and suicide prevention: care provider's attitudes, awareness and prevention education

The purpose of this study is to explore foster caregivers' awareness of suicide preventive measures with foster youth under their care, as well as their attitudes and education around suicidality. Foster caregivers were defined as social workers, group home staff, foster youth parents, and other primary caregivers. Quantitative data was collected from an electronic ten-question survey distributed to anonymous participants via email. All respondents were social workers, and the majorities were Caucasian females. The results indicated that these foster youth caregivers are well versed in suicidality recognition, knowledgeable about how to attend to youth with suicide ideation, and feel comfortable addressing the topic of suicide with foster youth. These findings demonstrate a need for future research to be conducted on foster youth caregivers, with particular emphasis on diversity and with the inclusion of foster parents, kinship parents, and other primary caregivers.