ST. LOUIS – Missouri is taking proposals to fight suicide in the state’s farmers. The Missouri Hospital Association estimated rural men between​ 35 and 44 years old die from suicide at three times the statewide rate. The association also noted a shortage of mental health providers in the state. This was according to a report from February 2020 before the COVID pandemic triggered more mental health issues and a deeper shortage of providers. Since then, farmers have faced worsening climate change, more family farm closures, and now a nationwide bird flu outbreak.

In April, the Missouri Office of Administration issued a request for proposals. They are looking for operators of a 24/7 suicide prevention hotline to help farmers. Candidates have until Wednesday, May 25 at 2 p.m. to file. Click here to learn more and search solicitation RFPS30034902202204.