Workplace Suicides Are on the Rise

Today’s post was shared by Workers Comp Brief and comes from

And rates are particularly high among people working in law enforcement, farming, and auto repair, a new study found. Atlantic

In the first three months of last year, 10 people at Orange, a French telecoms company, killed themselves. It was not the first time such tragedy had struck the mobile giant. The company—formerly known as France Telecom—also reported a rash of self-inflicted deaths between 2008 and 2009. A similar cluster of suicides once gripped Foxconn, where 18 people working at the factory in Shenzhen, China, attempted suicide in 2010, and where another 150 threatened an en masse death jump in 2012 in protest of low wages and poor working conditions.

Though there haven’t been such notable concentrations of workplace suicides at one company like that in the United States, in 2013, the last year for which data are available, 270 people in the U.S. committed suicide at work—a 12 percent increase over the prior year.

“The reasons for any suicide are complex, no matter where they take place. Usually many factors are at play,” says Christine Moutier, the chief medical officer of the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention (AFSP). Among them are economic and work-related stressors.

One recent study found that the global recession that began in 2007 could be linked with more than 10,000 suicides across North America and Europe.

“Historically, suicide rates do rise during economic downturns. The entire…

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