The silence that has shrouded suicide in Indian country is being pierced by growing alarm at the sheer numbers of young Native Americans taking their own lives — more than three times the national average, and up to 10 times the average on some reservations.
Feb. 12, 2014 A grave site of Native Americans on the Gila Indian reservation in Sacaton, Ariz. The Justice Department recently created a national task force to study violence and its impact on American Indian and Alaska Native children, part of an effort to prevent children’s exposure to violence and reduce the numbers of Native American youth in the criminal justice system. The suicide rate has startled some officials on the task force who view the epidemic as another outcome of what they see as pervasive despair. Linda Davidson/The Washington Post Buy Photo