State worker suicide on the increase

August 27, 2010

The number of calls from state employees for workplace grief counseling has doubled as officials also grapple with a rise in employee suicide. [Sacramento Bee]

Counselors met 33 times in 2009 with state employees traumatized by the suicide of a colleague, compared with 14 calls in 2008. There were 18 calls in 2007, the first year for which figures are available.

“And not every suicide is declared,” said UC Davis psychologist Phillip Shaver. “Some people kill themselves and no one ever knows it.”

Analysts say that the state’s unprecedented labor unrest – on-again, off-again furloughs that cut state worker pay nearly 15 percent, fractured labor relations with Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger, rising public disdain for civil servants – has increased tension for a group of people who tend to value security and predictability in their work.

Assuming a one-to-one relationship between state employee suicides and counseling calls, last year’s numbers translate into nearly 14 deaths per 100,000 state workers. That’s up from about six per 100,000 in 2008 and nearly eight per 100,000 in 2007.

There were eight suicides per 100,000 residents in the four-county Sacramento region in 2009, down from 11 per 100,000 the year before.


Loading...

7 Comments

  1. Sherlock says:

    19 private sector workers in favor of this comment, 14 public workers against.

    (2) 2 Total Votes - 2 up - 0 down
  2. whatisup says:

    From the story: Assuming a one-to-one relationship between state employee suicides and counseling calls, last year’s numbers translate into nearly 14 deaths per 100,000 state workers. That’s up from about six per 100,000 in 2008 and nearly eight per 100,000 in 2007.

    This story is from the Sacramento Bee. The headline proclaims State Worker suicide is up. However, they couldn’t find out the actual number of suicides of state employees, but could find out the actual number of counseling calls? Instead, they guessed at the number of suicides! This appears to be a loaded story.

    (7) 7 Total Votes - 7 up - 0 down
  3. Citizen says:

    How does this rate of suicide compare to the general rate of suicide. Suicide rates will be going up and the economy tanks. What about the rate of suicide among people without jobs. What would happen to the suicide rate among state workers fired instead of being furloughed.

    (6) 6 Total Votes - 6 up - 0 down
  4. MarkJames says:

    Tell me this isn’t gov employees responding? Compare to the response on other blogs and tell me otherwise. CCN is targeted by local gov.

    (6) 8 Total Votes - 7 up - 1 down
  5. easymoney says:

    Whaaa, whaaa, whaaa…
    Stop the belly achin and get to work….

    (4) 22 Total Votes - 13 up - 9 down
  6. MarkJames says:

    It has become obvious to me and many others that because this website is known to report about local gov that they are trolled by local gov. I suspect that local gov often dominates these threads. If you look at the opinions that often predominate the threads of CCN verse what is expressed on other public threads (reporting identical or similar concerns) a clear distinction begins to submerge. CCN has attracted a great deal of local gov concern and readership. There is no question that the local gov frequently over whelm these threads. I don’t know what you can do about it but I would look into it.

    (-2) 14 Total Votes - 6 up - 8 down
  7. PaulJones says:

    Oh Good Lord, give us a break. Our gov workers are so spoiled . This just proves that they could never make it in the private sector. Sounds like a bunch of emotionally disturbed incompetents. 12% of the people who pay their salaries are out of work. One out of every ten home owners are going into foreclosure and our public servants can’t deal with a day a month off without pay or the possibility that they might have to really work for a living and invest in a 401K for retirement. No guarantees and they will kill themselves or need us to pay for their psychiatrists!

    (7) 41 Total Votes - 24 up - 17 down

Comments are closed.