Seeking a Cure: Mental health access scarce in rural, farming communities

With farmers facing increasing stress and depression, Midwestern states and national farm groups are making more efforts to better provide services to alleviate the high rate of suicide among the agriculture industry.

Yet in rural areas, this care is more of a challenge.

Relocating USDA agencies delayed millions in grants. One was for a suicide prevention network for farmers.

Sky Chadde is the Midwest Center’s Gannett Agricultural Data Fellow. He can be reached at

This story is embargoed for republication until Feb 22, 2020. The Trump administration’s decision to relocate two US Department of Agriculture agencies delayed millions in grant funding. One stalled project was a suicide prevention network for farmers. Last year, the USDA announced the Economic Research Service and the National Institute of Food and Agriculture or NIFA, which funds the network, would relocate to Kansas City.