- Associated Press - Thursday, March 31, 2011

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (AP) — Gov. Susana Martinez traveled to the nation’s largest American Indian reservation Thursday to sign a bill that aims to tackle a problem that has plagued many communities across Indian Country.

Martinez stopped in the Navajo community of Shiprock to sign legislation that establishes a framework for creating a statewide clearinghouse for suicide prevention along with culturally-based prevention initiatives.

The legislation marks a first step by the state to address the problem of high suicide rates among Indian youth in New Mexico.

The legislation was sparked in part by a string of suicides in Thoreau and on the Mescalero reservation between 2009 and 2010.

No funding has been set aside for the effort, but supporters say they will work over the next year to find the necessary money.

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