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Academics against reducing suicide gender differences

Filed under: General,Men's Health — JohnPotter @ 1:02 pm Fri 14th October 2005

Rift erupts over male suicide policy The Press

A serious rift has appeared among suicide experts over policies targeting male suicides.

The debate erupted yesterday as the Males and Suicides Symposium 2005 organised by Suicide Prevention Information New Zealand (Spinz) opened in Christchurch. Spinz is a non-government, New Zealand-wide information service, in partnership with the Mental Health Foundation.

Suicide researchers based at the Christchurch School of Medicine and Health Sciences have challenged claims by Spinz director Merryn Statham, calling them “misleading”.

In a statement supported by six other academics, Associate Professor Annette Beautrais said yesterday Statham had pointed to the disproportionate rate of suicide in males and proposed male suicide was a major area to be addressed.

However, a clear decline in the male to female suicide ratio had occurred in recent years, she said. In 1994, four males took their own lives for every one female. By 2002 the ratio had declined to 3.2 males for every one female suicide.

“Under these circumstances the extent to which further policies to reduce gender differences are needed is debatable.”


  1. Hmmm, so over the last 10 years the suicide differential between men and women in NZ has decreased from 4 males killing themselves for every 1 woman killing herself (400% more males) to 3.2 men per woman (320% more men).
    In response to these figures (which incidently don’t account for those men who die mysteriously – in car smashes, ‘drownings’ etc – perhaps by suiciding – nobody knows for sure) a bunch of Christchurch researchers led by Annette Beautrais, reckon we should debate having further policies to reduce gender differences in suiciding!

    Holy shit! What a stunning success we’re having so far eh Annette? Gosh, at this rate men’s suicide rate will fall to women’s by –


    Only 25 years away chaps!
    So we’re all doing fine then.
    Let’s all just jolly well congratulate ourselves and carry on as before. We’re doing so wonderfully well that we don’t need to speed things up for men. Annette’s Christchurch boffs have a perfect handle on the situation, and well we’re talking about men aren’t we? As if they’re worth it!

    A message to Associate Professor Beautrais –

    Your sickening attitude towards men turns my blood cold with fear!
    How uncaring about men can you get?

    Comment by Stephen — Sat 15th October 2005 @ 12:02 am

  2. Stephen,

    What more might be said about this sad state of affairs?

    That the rate will increase when Cun[silent-T]liffe passes the child support amendment bill?

    That, if there were 1 woman suiciding for every man that committed suicide (gender equality), would not our glorious Mrs Clark be moving Heaven and Earth to stop the un-necessary killing of her feminist-lesbian comrades-in-arms?

    It will likely be safer to bet that, unless there is a significant change in government policy towards the enslavement of Men in New Zealand (pigs will more likely sprout wings), the rate of male suicide will increase as we move towards your vaunted “2032”.

    The change in attitude needs to come from the government and can only be expedited by Men and Women getting in the face of their politicians and “people” like the professor to tell them we have had enough. Maybe some of us will live to see the day?

    Comment by Ethos — Mon 17th October 2005 @ 2:16 pm

  3. Nik from has posted some info on the SPINZ Conference on Male Suicide held 13 & 14 October in Christchurch: ‘Males and Suicide – Pathways Forward’

    What it was about….and what happened…plus some interesting research links…

    Comment by JohnP — Tue 25th October 2005 @ 4:14 pm

  4. male youth suicide is the highest (20-24) with men in the ages 65+ being the next highest. maybe thats because there is a lack of help available to these individuals??
    maybe the government needs to target these age groups in order to decrease these ratios and statistics??

    Comment by Alana — Sun 12th March 2006 @ 9:02 pm

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