Sense of belonging and youth suicidal behaviors: What do communities and schools have to do with it?
Situating Thomas Joiner's concept of belonging within an ecological perspective, this study examined the associations between school and community belonging and suicidal ideation and attempts among high school students. The study used data from the 2013 Texas Youth Risk Behavior Survey (N = 2,560). Results demonstrated that community belonging reduced the odds of youth suicidal behaviors. School bullying, feeling unsafe at school, and being threatened or injured at a school increased the odds of suicidal behaviors. Findings suggest that fostering safe and inclusive environments and strengthening youth's experiences of school and community belonging may reduce suicidal behaviors in high school youth.