Two greatly admired and creative people died by suicide this week: On Tuesday, designer Kate Spade, known for her colourful handbags and clothing, and today, chef, traveller and television personality Anthony Bourdain, who opened our eyes to the great and offbeat tastes and cuisines of the world.
These tragedies offer an opportunity to speak openly about suicide and to show that mental illness and depression can affect anyone at any point in their lives. But, at least so far, these cases represent a missed opportunity for The Globe and Mail. While other publications, such as The Guardian and The New York Times, included links to help lines and websites on depression and suicide in their stories about Kate Spade, The Globe has not. I think it should be routine practice to do this, and it is under active consideration.
The Globe published an Associated Press article on Kate Spade’s suicide that did not meet the guidelines of the Canadian Psychiatric Association and the Mindset Media Guide, which offers suggestions to journalists covering mental-health issues.