Fewer suicide attempts among the young is connected to legalization of gay marriage, says study

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A decline in the number of teenagers who are trying to take their own lives is related to the legalization of same sex marriage, according to a new study.

The attempted suicide rate among college students in the U.S.A. fell by 7% after the new marriage laws came into force. The reduction was 14% among gay, lesbian, and bisexual students, according to the study.

It is published in the medical journal, JAMA Pediatrics. The researchers compared 32 of the 35 U.S. states that have legalized same sex marriage before January 2015, with those that had not done so.

They took other factors into account, yet reached a conclusion that the states without legal gay marriage had not decreased at all in suicide attempts.

‘These are school students who, for the most part, would not be getting married in the near future. Nonetheless, removing a legal prohibition against same-gender marriage reduces the stigma attached to sexual orientation’, said study leader, Julia Raifman, in a statement.

Suicide has, for a long time, been widespread among young people; it is the second most prevalent cause of death among people aged 10 to 24 years of age, after accidents.

The study showed that 29% of gay, lesbian, and bisexual students had tried to commit suicide in the past twelve months, compared with 6% of heterosexual students.

The U.S. Supreme Court legalized same sex marriage at a national level in June 2015.

 

Source: NTB scanpix / Norway Today

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