A new study has recorded a hopeful correlation between rates of teen suicide attempts and the prevalence of same-sex marriage.The journal JAMA Pediatrics published a study on Monday, February 20, 2017 that showed the number of suicide attempts among high school students decreased in states where same-sex marriage was legal.
The findings covered 32 states that legalized same-sex marriage from 1999 to 2015. The landmark Supreme Court decision legalizing same-sex marriage nationwide came in July of 2015 While the study makes it clear this is a correlation and not a direct causation, it’s the suicide attempt rates among marginalized groups that really make the comparison interesting.
According to the authors of the study, gay, lesbian and bisexual students had double the dip in suicide attempt numbers than students who identified as straight.
The rate fell to 7% for the overall student population and 14% for those who identified as LGBT, or what the study calls “sexual minorities.
“These numbers are important because, as the study points out, “suicide is the second leading cause of death among adolescents between the ages of 15 and 24 years.”
According to the Trevor Project, a suicide prevention organization focused on LGBT youth, queer young people around that age are four times more likely to attempt suicide than their heterosexual peers.