Friday, June 16, 2017

Poor New Zealand

Well, I didn't know this:
A new report by Unicef contains a shocking statistic - New Zealand has by far the highest youth suicide rate in the developed world.
A shock but no surprise - it's not the first time the country tops that table.
The Unicef report found New Zealand's youth suicide rate - teenagers between 15 and 19 - to be the highest of a long list of 41 OECD and EU countries.
The rate of 15.6 suicides per 100,000 people is twice as high as the US rate and almost five times that of Britain.
I suppose it is not a great surprise to read that the rates are particularly high amongst young Maori and Pacific Islander males - it ties in with what happens in the Australian aboriginal population.

I also learned something new and surprising about the Australian suicide rate at this site:
Suicide rates in Australia peaked in 1963 (17.5 per 100,000), declining to 11.3 per 100,000 in 1984, and climbing back to 14.6 in 1997. Rates have been lower than this since that year. The age-standardised suicide rate for persons in 2015 was 12.7 per 100,000. 
Why was 1963 a peak year for suicide?   Certainly puts nostalgia for the Golden Age of Menzies into a bit of perspective...

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