30-year study links rise in suicides in Greece with austerity measures

Austerity measures in Greece resulted in a "significant, sharp, and sustained" increase in suicides, according to 30-year study published in the British Medical Journal this week.

The study, led by researchers from the University of Pennsylvania, found that there was a 35 per cent rise in suicide cases in June 2011 - the same time as the government imposed further austerity measures to pay the country's debts - which was sustained through 2012.

During the study - from 1 January 1983 to 31 December 2012 - researchers tracked the suicide rate and identified the effects of "austerity" and "prosperity" factors on the numbers.

We found that perhaps it is the economic policies themselves, but also the public messaging of these policies by the government and the press that are both driving the changes in suicide.

[An important task] is to think about different, less ominous messaging when austerity policies are enacted and perhaps even to consider less drastic policies that achieve similar goals.

  • Charles Branas, lead author of the study, speaking to AFP
Keep reading...Show less
Please log in or register to upvote this article
The Conversation (0)